Citrus Valley Homecoming ‘lights’ up the night

By CITRUS VALLEY ETHIC STAFF

Citrus Valley High School had their 2022 Homecoming dance on Sep.17 on campus. According to a video posted by the Citrus Valley Associated Student Body (ASB)  class on instagram, it was their “best one yet.” The event had many activities like pool tables, a photo booth, a 360 camera, casino-style game tables, and a fro-yo truck. 

ASB stuck to their word, as there was a DJ set up with screens, lasers, fog, and music to fit the theme of the night, “All of the Lights.” The dance floor was set up in front of the E-builidng in the center of the quad. A stage set up housed the DJ with five different screens, numerous laser beams aiming in all different directions, colorful spotlights, disco balls and fog machines. These special effects combined were able to transform a normal lunch area into an unrecognizable dance floor. 

This year’s homecoming dance offered a few different options of sweet treats and finger food for all students, included in the price of the dance ticket. A frozen yogurt truck offered free, and technically unlimited, frozen yogurt in four different flavors: vanilla, chocolate, cookies and cream and strawberry along with both fruit and candy toppings. Other food items included french fries and hot grilled cheese sandwiches, which provided students with some vegetarian options. 

Elysa Lebig, Citrus Valley junior, said that “everything except the french fries was good, but not worth the $75 ticket.” 

The majority of attendees enjoyed the fro-yo truck and food stands despite the long lines.

The line was long for the 360 camera, but Citrus Valley Senior Brooklyn Timm said “it was awesome” and rated it a “10/10.”

The photo booth also had a long line and Citrus Valley Senior Lily Florez enjoyed the picture quality. 

Florez also preferred the digital version “so [she] wouldn’t have to hold the physical copy of it.”

Although some students preferred the physical photos, they were still enjoyed and popular among attendees.

The commonly used game tables reappeared at this year’s Homecoming. The game tables at this year’s dance included pool, blackjack and poker. Even though there were many more tables at this year’s dance in comparison to last year, they were still packed with students who were both eager to play and eager to learn.

Hailey Barrios, Citrus Valley freshman, said, “It was very fun, very fun!”

Featured image: Citrus Valley presented their 2022 homecoming ‘All of the Lights’ on Sept. 17, 2022. (MIA CALIVA/ Ethic News Photo)

Teacher Feature Q&A: Karen Knudson Wilson welcomes students to Orangewood

By STEPHANIE ELENA PEREZ

Karen Knudson Wilson, is a teacher at Orangewood High School. She teaches American Government and OASIS. OASIS stands for Orientation, Assessment, Study Skills, Insight, Success. Every student who attends Orangewood, starts by taking the OASIS class for three weeks with Wilson and Stephanie Sachs, Foods and OASIS teacher. OASIS is an introduction class where students learn about the school, themselves and each other. For example, Wilson guides students through writing an essay about themselves, such as where they grew up, the school they came from and other topics. Students see Wilson as a caring teacher, and OASIS teachers as the “moms” of new students at Orangewood.

Wilson answer questions about her teaching career, interests, and people who influenced her.

How many years have you been teaching?

Wilson: I have been teaching for 14 years. Prior to teaching I was a school administrator and counselor. 

If you were able to choose a different career path would you still choose to teach or would you choose something else?

I really love being a teacher. Knowing I have a positive impact on young people means so much to me. I’d very likely choose being an educator all over again, even though I had the chance to go to law school.

Have you had a different job besides teaching?

Yes! I started out my career as an elementary school counselor and was then promoted into school administration overseeing counseling and intervention programs for a neighboring school district. When I became a mom I took some time off and returned to education (as a teacher) so I could be on the same schedule as my children.

What do you enjoy about being able to teach students?

I love the day to day fun teaching brings. Everyday is different, and it’s definitely never dull. What I enjoy most about educating students is helping them realize the decisions they make today will impact their future. 

What made you want to teach?  

I grew up with a mom who worked in public education for over 30 years. Seeing the impact she made on kids made me want to have a career with a purpose like that, too.

Did you have role models growing up? 

My parents were amazing role models. My dad served in the military, went to school at night, coached little league and still managed to make time for his family everyday. My mom took care of all of us and always made time to take us to practice, our games and the events with our friends. 

If so how were you influenced by them?

The best thing they did for me and my brothers is give us their time. It really shaped who I became as a person and a parent myself.

If you could, what advice would you give students?

Put down your cell phones. Try not to spend so much time watching everyone else’s life go by that you forget to live your own.

If you could travel anywhere in the world where would it be and why?

I love, love, love to travel and have been fortunate enough to visit many places around the world. I’d really like to make it to Bali and Greece someday…places by the water make me very happy. I also like to experience different cultures and foods.

Do you speak another language? If so what language do you speak and if you don’t, what language would you like to learn?

I know a little bit of Spanish and some ASL. I really wish I knew more!

What do you enjoy doing when you aren’t teaching? Do you have hobbies, interests?

When I’m not teaching I love to travel, read, cook and spend time with my family.

Do you have any goals you’d like to accomplish?

I would really like to move home closer to my parents. I’d also like to live by the beach someday and retire when there’s still plenty of time left to play and enjoy my life.

Is there something you would want people to know about you?

Playing little league baseball growing up and softball in high school led to a wonderful opportunity for me to attend college – I was the first person in my family to graduate.

Soul Food Fest unites students and Redlands community with Black culture

By MEANNA SMITH

Stronger Together Now, a community outreach organization, hosted their second Soul Food Fest on Sept. 11 at Ed Hales Park in Downtown Redlands. This event was sponsored by Chase Bank.

Stronger Together Now, the organizers of the event, set up a booth with an inspiring promotional banner advocating against racism and other prejudices. At this booth, t-shirts and tote bags could be purchased and a donation jar was available for people who would like to see more events like this in the Redlands  community.  (Ethic News photo)

This festival gives many Black owned businesses and organizations a chance to showcase their products or services. This festival was also a great way for the Black community to be recognized in the city of Redlands. The Soul Food Fest gave the local high school club Black Student Union a chance to connect with each other while also connecting with the community and its citizens.

Showcasing a game booth table with cup stacking and cards, various Redlands Unified School District Black Student Union members work together at the Soul Food Festival on Sept. 11. Students from Redlands, Redlands East Valley, Citrus Valley and Orangewood High Schools were present at the event.  (Photo courtesy of Quinkitha O’Neal)

Some of the businesses that were present during the festival were House of Purvian Cookie, Brooklyn’s Bakery Bites, Delviccio’s BBQ SmokeHouse, Asdelina’s Agua Frescas, and most popularly known, The WingMan. Citrus Valley, Redlands, Redlands East Valley and Orangewood High Schools all had BSU clubs present at the festival. 

The House of Peruvian Cookie at the Soul Food Festival was a popular choice among the many food booths, selling many desserts and cookies. The House of Peruvian Cookie is mainly located in Santa Clarita and is a cookie selling business based on Peruvian desserts. (Kevin Kambey/Ethic News photo)

Andrew Simmons, senior from Orangewood High School’s BSU, said, “ I really enjoyed seeing other schools’ Black Student Unions and helping all the different booths set up.”  

Jazz Daughtrey, a junior at Citrus Valley High School, attended the festival with the Citrus Valley’s BSU and said she loved “the soul food fest and seeing the Black culture.” 

“The food was amazing and I love how welcoming the other Redlands BSU clubs were,” said Daughtrey.

Another member of Citrus Valley’s BSU, sophomore Kalaya Felton, stated, “The shirts that people were selling were so beautiful and everything was so well put together. The soul food festival was just overall awesome.”

Various activities were available to participate in during the festival. These activities included spades and dominos contests, music, and food competitions. The food competition consists of three different categories: best main dish, best side dish, and best dessert. 

The award for best main dish was given to The WingMan with his lemon pepper wings, the winner for best side dish was Papa’s BBQ for their mac n cheese, and lastly the winner for best dessert was Still Standn Barbq with their famous banana pudding. 

The winners of the competition were awarded a certificate of appreciation as well as an additional prize. Spades and dominos winners were awarded a customized domino or card set. 

While the judges were tasting food from all the different food competition competitors, Kologbo Daughtrey gave a live performance on his soprano saxophone. He played a variety of songs including “Lovely Day” by Bill Withers. 

The Soul Food Festival had a mission of bringing the Black community and all people in Redlands together to bond and unite as one. 

Redlands citizen Kaylee Doll, junior at Citrus Valley, stated, “I think the Soul Food Festival was really a pure, safe, and fun environment and it was a great way to spend my Sunday afternoon.” 

News brief: Redlands East Valley High School’s Mental Health Awareness Club holds a suicide prevention event

By AILEEN JANEE CORPUS

The Redlands East Valley High School Mental Health Awareness Club held a suicide prevention event during lunch on Thursday Sept. 8, 2022.

The booth was held in observance of National Suicide Prevention Week which is from Sept. 4 to Sept. 10. 

“I think that it’s good that more people are talking about mental health and the stigma around it,” said sophomore Eliana Campa, “So, the booth was really cool because people were able to talk about what mental health is and why it’s important.”

At the booth, there were pins with green ribbons for mental health awareness, candy for students, and a positive affirmation station. There students were able to write positive anecdotes on notes or on a poster that will be hung up at REV. Finally, an interactive mental health check was available where students could have placed a paint dot for how they were doing in a certain section. 

“I was in charge of the positive affirmation notes,” said Mental Health Awareness Club Vice President and senior Amélie Palacios, “and I saw that many students were more than happy to leave a kind note for a student that would need it in the future.”

“[Mental Health Awareness Club’s] goal is to provide a safe space to learn, talk and listen to each other,” said Mental Health Awareness Club President and senior Sarinna Schwendiman. 

Mental Health Awareness Club’s next event is their annual Mental Health Fair where multiple clubs from REV and organizations from the county hold educational booths with games, giveaways or resources. 

On Sept. 8, 2022 during lunch time, Wildcats came by the Mental Health Awareness Club’s booth dedicated to suicide prevention. There were many activities at the booth including an interactive mental health check and a positive affirmation station. Among the Wildcats, sophomore Eliana Campa picks up a pin and reads the table cover which shows that National Suicide Prevention Week and a crisis hotline: 988. (Credit / Amélie Palacios)

Q&A: New Wildcat theatre teacher talks perfectionism, plays and ‘Pride and Prejudice’

By KENDRA BURDICK

Starting in the 2022-23 school year, Ashley Visco is teaching at Redlands East Valley High School for her first year. She will be teaching Theatre Arts I and II. (Photo courtesy of  Ashley Visco)

Ashley Visco is a new teacher to Redlands East Valley High School staff. Visco teaches Theater Arts I and Theater Arts II and tries to make a colorful and inspiring learning environment for her students. Visco answers some questions about herself and her career below. 

Why did you choose this course to teach?

I loved theater forever. For as long as I can remember I was raised on it, a bit because when my dad was in high school he was heavily involved in theater. My sisters all loved musicals and things like that so I kinda grew up with a lot of plays and musical performances. Stories in general, I loved. I volunteered at my former high school Pomona Catholic High School, I volunteered for their theater program, helping out with their productions. I was working with the kids and I was like, I could teach this, it’d be fun and I’d enjoy doing it. But I didn’t know if I’d have the opportunity to teach a drama class, I’d always thought I’d go for English, so when this came up “Hey do you want to be our drama teacher?” I said “Yeah! I do.” I love this and it’s been really fun.

Did you teach at any other schools before REV?

This is my first teaching position and I did student teach at Upland High School and that is about it. Only Redlands so far.

 Why did you choose to teach at REV?

For sure I am really happy with REV and Redlands in general, Redlands Unified. I’ve had the opportunity to teach before this. I finished my program two years ago to work at charter schools and different things but I felt “It just doesn’t feel like a good fit.” Other schools just didn’t feel organized and it didn’t seem like they were prioritizing the kids. I almost worked at an arts high school which had a lot of theater kids coming in, but it still wasn’t the right fit for me. I got hired to do summer school for Redlands and I just really liked the district. Everyone was so nice and professional. Then this school interviewed me and was very nice and I hoped that I got the job. Everyone I’ve met has been so nice and lovely and the campus is big and beautiful and has this big, beautiful theater. My high school’s theater was like one-twentieth [the size of] of REV’s. 

 Why did you choose to become a teacher?

I talked to my English teacher saying “Hey, I want to be a writer.” Things changed with college. I was majoring in English and it didn’t feel purposeful enough, it didn’t feel like I was doing anything. It was like “what’s the point, what am I here for.” When I volunteered with those kids I thought it felt important. So I tried teaching because I liked working with young people and doing something that could matter. 

What would you be if you could have been anything other than a teacher?

I wanted to be a writer for a long time. I was very book obsessed and still am but my brain gets tired so unfortunately I haven’t sat down and read a good book in a while. I thought I’d be a writer because I love historical romance, Pride and Prejudice, and things like that. I wrote Pride and Prejudice fan-fiction back in the day. 

What’s important to you?

Respect is huge for me. Confidence is also very important because I like working with younger people and helping them find who they want to be. Especially because we all can remember what it’s like being at this time in your life (high school) its really difficult and you need those people who support you and build you up and being that person to students is important to me. Respect and love are all around for everybody. That’s something that I love about this theater department. “I can do anything and I’ve got people from different parts of theater that can come in here and try something new.” It’s an exciting position and I’d say that the most important thing is respect and love for everybody.

What’s something that you would like to tell students?

Focus on yourself. I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately cause it’s easy to get stuck in the day and your schedule and you try to get through it with your friends but it can get frustrating and it’s good to remember to focus on yourself and your needs. Especially with school, get done what you need to get done and you might not know where you’re going necessarily but that’s okay as long as in the moment, they are happy, healthy, and surrounded by people that are good for you.

What college did you go to?

I started at the University of La Verne right after I graduated from high school but my mental health started to slip a little bit to where I was struggling and I just wasn’t happy and finally I was struggling too. So I decided “Let’s take a break.” I worked and matured and tried to figure out what I wanted to do, that’s when I volunteered. I was like “Teaching sounds good. I worked with kids at the theater program and loved it.” So I went online and went to Grand Canyon University which is a cool program and I highly recommend that people decide if they want to go to college in person or not in person. I was struggling with the anxiety of being in college and being with all of those people and I realized that online works better for me. I got a Bachelor of Arts in English for secondary education, specifically for teaching English. 

What’s the biggest thing that you welcome into your classroom?

The bravery to try new things is huge and even if it’s the smallest thing. You don’t have to be “look at me” but if normally you’re kinda shy and you step out of your shell and do some of the exercises and games we play. The courage to do something silly is really important. Another thing I’ve been thinking about is that there’s so much shyness I think and the awkwardness of standing out in high school which I understand. Something that I value and appreciate is seeing someone willing to just do something as opposed to having the fear of standing out.

Who got you to where you are now?

My parents in the sense that they helped me get through a lot of school just by being very accepting and supportive. There was never too much pressure or too little pressure. They were like “Hey, we know you’re smart and do your best.” I didn’t struggle with school because of that so I appreciate that they were like that. I had an English teacher who was also the drama director at my high school. She was wild and wacky and we had a lot in common. We’d talk about Pride and Prejudice. We’d go out to Cal Poly Pomona and do Shakespearean competitions, we’d perform in front of people for prizes and stuff. My fiance has been super supportive, he’s somebody who helps you be yourself, to find out who you are and what you need. Finally, me. I helped myself get here and I don’t think I give myself credit enough which is something that I’m trying to work on cause I’ve worked hard and it’s difficult to look at yourself and say “You’re doing great right now.” I constantly think about what I did wrong and what I could do better. But it’s like “No. I’m doing great and I worked hard.” 

What is something that you’ve had to change about yourself to fit the job?

Perfectionism is deadly and I lived with it throughout my life. I didn’t realize it until I got older. There’s a part of you as a teacher, I found, that feels responsible for everything. I think that’s why some students see teachers as controlling because there’s a part of you (as a teacher) that makes you feel like it’s all your fault. If it’s not going well, you have to fix it. If a lesson didn’t go well it’s like “Oh my god, I’m the worst.” With cheating, I try to figure out what I did wrong and try to give the students a second chance. I’ve learned I need to just step back and realize that people make their choices. Everybody does what they do, naturally, you can’t step in and try to change it cause you’d be controlling them saying “Hey this, hey this.” Sometimes you’ve got to step back and let them make their choice and if their choice is to not do well in the class then it’s not my fault. If I did everything that I could do, it’s not my fault.

What is the main goal you want to see your students achieve?

Confidence is an important goal I want to see my students achieve. I want them to have enough confidence in themselves to be like “Hey, I can do this and it’s going to be okay.” My ultimate goal is to have them try acting, try to get up on the stage and use their voices. Acting did that for me, it built my confidence like now I can give back the wrong order and talk to people on the phone. Exploring is also a big thing. That’s why I picked the fall play that I did, cause I want them to explore different things from every culture and variety.

News brief: Orangewood High School hosts first Black Student Union meeting of the year

By DIAMOND STONE

Orangewood High School hosted their first Black Student Union meeting this year on Aug.31 at lunch.  

The staff who attended the meeting were Orangewood AVID Coordinator and teacher LouAnn Perry, Family and Community Liaison and BSU advisor LaRena Garcia and Orangewood teacher and BSU advisor Vanessa Aranda.  

There were around 35 students and pizza was provided for all the kids that attended.

“The meeting was an introduction about BSU and it was also enjoyable and entertaining,” said Orangewood senior Blessen Thomas. 

At the meeting they talked about upcoming events like the Soul Food Fest on Sept. 11 at Ed Hales Park and the Historical Black College and University Fair.

“This was a good time and it was for students who wanted to join BSU. It’s a new club at Orangewood,” said Orangewood senior Anniyah Allison.

News brief: Citrus Valley High School hosts Club Rush

By ETHIC NEWS STAFF

Citrus Valley’s annual club rush took place on Aug. 26, 2022. Club rush is when most of the CV clubs gather together in CV’s quad to give out information about their club. This is especially helpful for incoming freshmen who want to join a club but don’t exactly know what their new school has to offer.

Club Rush was held in the quad during lunch. Some of the popular clubs at club rush included Blackhawks for Change, Asian student union, Cars and Coffee, Auto Shop, Black Student Union, Multicultural Dance, Possibilities, Hispanic Heritage, and Interact club.

In total, thirty-four Citrus Valley Clubs attended club rush. Club rush gives many students the opportunity to join a club, socialize, and to develop many skills that the clubs at Citrus Valley offer to students.

The multitude of clubs gave many options to this year’s arriving freshman.

Freshman Karla Ziga Ortega said, “I’m looking to join the Hispanic Heritage club because I love my Mexican pride and supporting people, and I’m already in Yearbook, but it would be nice to see everyone coming together and to unite.”

Freshman Ellie Caliva said, “I want to join the Asian Student Union.” The Asian Student Union is a very popular club at CV that celebrates many aspects of Asian culture.

Club Rush was considered a success by many freshmen, including Caliva, who said that “It was good, I had fun,” and Ortega, who said that she “[liked] all the free stuff, [everything] looked good. I don’t know if I can commit to everything but I’ll try to join at least one club.”

Photo 1: Students gather around the Black Student Union tent to learn more about the club. (ELIZABETH MOLLOY/ Ethic News Photo)

Photo 2: Students flood the quad during lunch time, walking around with friends and peers as they learn about the clubs at Citrus Valley. (ELIZABETH MOLLOY/ Ethic News Photo)

Photo 3: Students stop by the Environmental Club table to learn about the club. (ELIZABETH MOLLOY/ Ethic News Photo)

Photo 4: Amber Sibbett, a sophomore at CV, passes out flyers to by passers reeling people in to join the Improv club on campus. (ELIZABETH MOLLOY/ Ethic News Photo)

Photo 5: Trevor Lam, a junior at CV poses for a picture holding up a sign advertising for the Asian Student Union (ASU) at club rush (ELIZABETH MOLLOY/ Ethic News Photo)

Five years later, lack of health class requirement is still a touchy subject


By KENDRA BURDICK and MIYAH SANBORN

Throughout the Redlands Unified School District, there has been the mystery of why the health class was taken out of the curriculum. The class was removed as a requirement five years ago.

Many students still do not know the reason behind the removal of this class.

In a written statement, Redlands School Board President Jim O’Neill explained that one reason was “the number of students who were using pay-for-summer school to get ahead and how this created an inequity for access to coursework in high school. More than 250+ incoming ninth-graders each year would pay $250 to take Health during the summer through the REP [Redlands Educational Partnership] foundation.”

Some students want the class back, thinking that it’s important to learn about what the health class teaches, while others think the health class made students uncomfortable or that having the class didn’t change anything.  

The following conversation took place between Redlands East Valley High School seniors Anthony Salzar and Jordan Hattar on April 27 regarding the value of health class in high school.

Anthony Salzar:  I believe that health class is valuable. I think that because most teachers don’t teach that. The internet is wrong and can lead people astray.


Jordan Hattar: No, I don’t think that parts of health class are necessary to be taught in a school. Well, back then, of course, they needed it cause there was no internet to know anything about it, but now, I knew all about it since fifth grade. If people don’t have access to the internet then it’s an adventure. At least with the internet, you don’t need to pay for a class or teachers.


Salzar: It’s a free class and this is a public school.


Hattar: Oh really? Well, I just don’t think sex ed is needed.


Salzar: It’s not just sex ed though. You’re also being taught diseases and other stuff.


Hattar: Yeah, diseases but about the other stuff, no, there’s no point. You can learn about protection on the internet and other things like that.


Salzar: If not school, people can learn this stuff from parents, siblings, and family members.


Hattar: What? But for the parents or kids that are too uncomfortable to have that talk, where else where they learn it but the internet?


Salzar: I think the class got taken away from people being uncomfortable.


Hattar: I think that not many people attended the class and they just filled it with other important classes. And I think that if the class were to be brought back, I think it wouldn’t make much of a difference.


Salzar: I think it would because it would stop a lot of teen pregnancy and help people that do know what to do are want to know more about health or sex ed.

“I think that health class is important because someone might have a disease and it’s smart to be educated about that,” says REV sophomore Max Flores, “I believe that it’s a class that should be brought back because some people don’t know how to take care of themselves and how to do it properly.”

“It can stop teen pregnancies and diseases. You also learn about your body, how to keep yourself clean and how to take care of yourself before you involve yourself with someone else,” says REV sophomore Haylee Lyon. “Especially now with the internet, everything is mainstream. I mean it’s everywhere, on TikTok, Instagram. There’s stuff going around anywhere, so I guess sheltering our kids – there’s no point in it anymore.”

While some students are unsure of why this course was removed, REV Assistant Principal Ron Kroetz addresses some of the confusion and says that the class has value.  

“The health class is important. I think that it is important for our kids to know these things and to learn,” says Kroetz. “It can be a touchy subject for some parents and how they see the content, the lessons, and whether they feel it’s appropriate for their children. It’s tough cause every kid is different and everyone has a different upbringing, a different family unit and there are different standards and different families so it’s tough for a school district to say ‘this is the only way we’re going to do it.”  

O’Neill explains the transition of the health curriculum into another class.

“We presented a couple of opportunities,” says O’Neill. “The first was to remove Health as a course for the sake of the graduation requirement and move the health units into another course; at the time it was discussed as either Biology or 9th grade PE.”

IN a related decision, sports were allowed to count for the second year of a physical education course for students.

“These two changes to policy and graduation requirements allowed students to have two more opportunities to take coursework that they were interested in rather than being required to take as a function of graduation requirements,” says O’Neill.

But there have been some challenges.

“For the PE teachers to teach the units, they must attend training and teach the most current version of health education,” says O’Neill. “The updated version includes updates to the laws on health and the new health framework. The Board has not adopted the new version and therefore the teachers have not been trained to teach the updated curriculum.”

Some students are still left with questions.

“How will the people that skipped the class [be affected] because when they were meant to have the class, the transition didn’t take place, get the education of the health class?” Joyce Harris, a freshman at REV, asks.

20 Questions with Orangewood High School’s English teacher Mrs. Lott

By JOCELYN GOMEZ

Kimberly Lott is an English teacher at Orangewood High School who is always welcoming to her students. She is known as someone who is real and honest with her students, in a way that is inspiring because she always stands in what she believes. She is unapologetically herself in the best way. Her efforts for students that are struggling don’t go unnoticed.

Q: What is your position or title? Pronouns? 

Kimberly Lott: English Teacher; she/her

Q: What are some of the classes you teach or main responsibilities with this position? 

Lott: I teach English 11 and English 12 as well as Advisory this year.  I have taught all four grades of English since I have been at OHS.  I have also taught English at the three middle school levels.  My favorite is English 12.How long have you worked in education? 24 yearsHave you held any jobs outside of education? Before I started teaching,  I worked as a teller at Bank of America; I also worked at Little Red School House which used to sell teacher supplies and a daycare with infants. I started teaching in 1998 at 23 years old.

Q: What led you to the position you are in today?  

Lott: A good friend taught at OHS and she convinced me to transfer over here.  She has since retired.

Q: What is one of your favorite parts of your job? 

Lott: My students.

Q: What is a challenging part of your job? 

Lott: My students. 🙂

Q: What is something others may not understand or know about who you are or what you do?

Lott: Students say I always look depressed, but I’m not.  That was the one good thing about masks; no one could tell if I was or wasn’t smiling under it.

Q: Who were early influences for you?

Lott: In high school, I was a TA in the library.  I got put in there because I was having a conflict with one of my teachers and that was the only place the counselor would move me.  I was so upset that I begged my parents to tell the counselor no and make her put me in another class because the librarian was so mean, but my parents said no.  It turned out to be the best part of high school.  I clicked with the librarian and we stayed in contact until she passed away.  She came to my graduation party and wedding.  Mrs. Carver taught me a lot and she had my back when I had another conflict in my senior year.  She is the reason I would love to be a high school librarian.

Q: Where did you grow up? What was life like then and there?

Lott: I grew up in San Bernardino.  My dad was raised there.  It used to be such a nice city, but that is no longer the case.

Q: What were you like as a teenager? 

Lott: A pain.  My parents would definitely agree with that.

Q: Did you have any mentors or role models growing up? How did they influence you?  

Lott: Mrs. Carver-the librarian at San Bernardino High School and Mr. Tetlock at Golden Valley Middle School.  Mr. Tetlock introduced me to the game of basketball.

Q: Is there an experience or event that had a major influence on who or where you are today? 

Lott: I look back over my teaching career and I think how strict I was when I first started because I thought that was how I was supposed to teach.  I wasn’t flexible at all.  I have learned so much since coming to OHS that has impacted my teaching style.  I have learned respect goes both way. Sometimes the lesson just isn’t working and that is ok. You’re only as good as your word. The connection you make with your students is worth so much more than a grade. My students are worth fighting for.

Q: What advice would you give your teenage-self? 

Keep your mouth shut.  Once you say something, you can’t get it back.  And thank goodness there was no social media back then.

Q: Do you like to travel and What notable places have you visited? 

Lott: I have been to Mexico and Canada.  I have been to multiple states during my life.

Q: What music do you like?  

Lott: Country and early rap

Q: Would you be willing to share a little about your family and/or pets? 

Lott: I have two kids.  Emily is 21 and Justin is 18.  Both are currently in college.  My husband and I have been married for 24 years, but I have known him since I was a teenager.  He used to ride his bike down my street to visit his girlfriend and we became friends.  I have two dogs I adore–Rufus and Avery and a cat, Shadow, who doesn’t like me and that is just fine with me.

Q: Do you have skills, interests or hobbies that you would like to share? What do you enjoy doing most with family and friends?

Lott: I enjoy camping, but haven’t done it in a long time.  I won’t camp in a tent and I don’t have an RV so that rarely happens.

Lott: What is a goal you have? 

Lott: I would really like to be a librarian at a high school or middle school.  It is scary to me because I have never tried that and, in the back of my head, I wonder what would I do if I did not like it and I couldn’t come back to OHS.

Opinion: Welcome students by normalizing pronoun usage and encouraging attendance

By JOCELYN GOMEZ

A goal at Orangewood High School will always be to help students feel welcomed in their learning environment. 

Normalize pronoun usage

A common issue that is experienced is uncomfortable pronoun usage or reference. 

People attach their identity to how they are referenced whether it’s he/she/they/them. After speaking and taking personal experiences from students that are a part of the LGBTQ+ community on campus, I feel it’s important to bring awareness for those that feel left out of everyday society during the school day, simply because others are uncomfortable with using a specific reference that applies to their gender identity.

A solution to this would be teachers having a brief lesson on the importance of pronouns even for heterosexual people, and get students comfortable with each reference. Many people use pronouns and ask people to use their pronouns because they want society to respect their identity.  Blogs, like Prospect, give personal reasons on why pronouns are important.

Encourage school attendance

After speaking to students on campus, being in the time frame during the year where absences are at a peak, I’d like to share helpful opinions on what would motivate students to come to school. 

Some students, like Orangewood Senior Thomas Vasquez, agree that they would be more motivated to attend if school lunch was better in quality and different each week.

Senior Sidney Hammons also mentioned more activities on campus, like movie nights or spring festivals. 

A more realistic and easier alternative to those activities that was recommended would be more interactive lesson plans like games that involve the lesson or subject being studied.
Tracking students’ absences and approaching them to check if they have a personal issue at home is helpful, according to companies like Creatix Campus. Sometimes asking them shows that someone cares and notices, which could mean more to a student if it was staff that asked.

Featured image was created by AVA LARSEN using canva.com

Baby food trend emerges at Redlands East Valley High School

By MIYAH SANBORN and KENDRA BURDICK

There has been an emerging trend of students bringing various types of baby foods to snack on throughout the day at Redlands East Valley High School. Although this may seem like a strange choice of food to bring to school, there are some components that compel students to eat it other than just taste. 

People of all ages have been eating baby food as a snack and with the goal of getting the nutrition that they need from a smaller portion. (KENDRA BURDICK/Ethic News photo)

Most high school students are eating baby food for the perceived benefit of losing weight, due to its nutrients and small portions. 

According to the health site Verywell Fit, Shereen Lehman, a healthcare journalist and fact checker, said, “Some proponents of the baby food diet claim that baby foods are healthier because they don’t usually contain any food additives.” 

The health site Healthline Writer Aimee Eyvazzadeh further explains how the diet is used for the reason that “the small portion sizes of baby food will reduce your daily calorie intake. There are several less restrictive versions of the diet, like replacing only one meal a day with baby food.”

With restrictive diets like the baby food diet, it’s also important to keep in mind the risk of developing disordered eating, which could lead to an eating disorder if the diet is followed for a longer period of time, according to Healthline.

“All the baby food that you can buy in the US meets strict US FDA regulations for safety,” said the health site Baptist Health.

Regardless of whether they bring baby food for dietary purposes or purely based on the taste,  some students enjoy this unusual snack to munch on throughout the school day.

Opinion: Careless gun policies cost lives

By ORLANDO CEPEDA

Guns are no doubt cherished by many Americans, whether they are used for recreational uses such as shooting in the range, practicing accuracy or hunting. But others have different views on guns, and they have good reasons to view guns in a negative manner due to the tragedies guns have caused. But all in all, guns should only serve one purpose and that’s self defense. 

A gun, considering its potential to cause lethal trauma, should not be looked at lightly by America. Guns should overall be harder to obtain all around America equally, as they are able to take someone’s life in a flash. Guns should not be obtained easier in some states compared to others as it creates an inequality. 

The differences between the two political parties have caused the parties to oppose one another’s beliefs in political views, such as gun control. With the two parties opposing each other’s gun control beliefs, neither parties stop to think about the effects their decisions might cause Americans. The parties who are mainly in charge of democracy should not be so careless on crucial laws like gun control. Both parties need to wake up and realize that their decisions impact America, whether it’s positive or negative. They need to think outside the box. If they truly cared about Americans, they would put their differences aside and agree on a safer alternative rather than completely opposing the other party.  In other words, don’t oppose something that could greatly affect America; elaborate and discuss how both parties could modify their beliefs and agree on something. 

Now let’s say the Republicans and Democrats continue to act with the same beliefs, in terms of Americans’ safety, in that case heavily arming public places such as schools, malls, and supermarkets would decrease mass shootings or decrease the likelihood of these tragedies occurring. If guns are so easy to obtain, then why don’t places that have been susceptible to shootings use guns in defense? A mentally unstable 18-year-old is able to acquire a gun, but schools, while still being frequently targeted by shootings, do not arm themselves as they should.

With the frequent shootings that have occurred, America has gotten to the point where it’s “better safe than sorry,” and since anything can happen, why not prepare for the unexpected? It could save countless lives.

America should have wisened up the moment the first school shooting ever happened, but hasn’t yet learned from those past tragedies. American children should never have to go to school in fear that it might be their last school day ever.

Q&A: Wildcat teacher Alexandria Driscoll talks new beginnings

By KENDRA BURDICK

Alexandria Driscoll is a new teacher to Redlands East Valley High School staff. Driscoll teaches Special Education English and tries to make a colourful and inspiring learning environment for her students. Driscoll answers some questions about herself and her career below. 

Why did you choose this course to teach?

I teach special ed and this was the opening that was here. My background is a little more in science but I thought that it’d be fun and I liked English a lot when I took it as a student.

Did you teach at any other schools before REV?

I taught at a school called Shandin Hills in San Bernardino. It’s a middle school and I taught science there.

 Why did you choose to teach at REV

I really wanted to be closer to home and closer to my daughter. I figured it was a good transition because I only live five minutes from here. I went to school in Redlands and I liked it a lot, so I thought it would be a good place to work.

 Why did you choose to become a teacher?

So, originally I studied child development and I liked it a lot. I liked learning how children grow and develop and it kind of got me into the whole ‘how children learn’ and so I was really interested in that. When I graduated from grad school, my friend and I were like “what should we do next” we didn’t really know. So, I kind of dragged her along with me to a credential program with me at the University of Redlands. We really liked it and honestly I’d say that my friend and I influenced each other and with the background in child development it was really easy to transition. 

If you could have been anything other than a teacher, what would you be?

Growing up, I really wanted to be a veterinarian at the zoo. But, that takes a lot of school. Science was not my strong suit growing up and definitely not going to the medical field. But if I could go back in time, I would just be taking care of a baby koala, just feeding it with a bottle.

What’s something that’s important to you?

I would say teaching in a way that’s inclusive for my students and making sure that they’re comfortable here and they feel like they’re represented. That’s my main goal here, even before I start teaching I make sure that this is a comfortable environment for them and that they feel when they’re here they won’t be judged. That they’re comfortable to discuss things here. That’s my main goal—to have inclusion in my classroom.

What’s something that you would like to tell students?

One, mainly for my students, is to not to give up because that’s life and it’s going to be really hard. If you give up the second there’s a struggle, you’re not going to, I think, make it in this world. I’d say, if you’re struggling and it’s hard just kind of push through the best that you can.

What school did you go to?

I started at RCC in Riverside and I got a couple of associates there then I transferred to Cal State. I got a bachelor’s and I stayed there for grad school and then I got a master’s in child development. Then, I went to the U of R and I got my credential there. 

What’s the biggest thing that you welcome into your classroom?

Difference of opinions. I tell my students if you don’t agree with what I’m saying, let’s discuss it. I really welcome an open discussion and that healthy disagreement as far as if you disagree then let’s talk about it.

Who got you to where you are now?

Mainly me because it was a lot of work. My family, they’re very supportive. Both of my parents didn’t really go to college so they didn’t really know how to help me. They were always like “She’s gonna do what she’s gonna do so we’ll just support her.” I’d say that my dad is a really big supporter of me, even if he doesn’t understand fully he’ll always agree with what path I choose.

Miss Driscoll has taught at Redlands East Valley High School for a year. (KENDRA BURDICK/Ethic News Photo)

20 Questions with Orangewood High School’s all-sport coach and teacher Mark Perkins

By JOCELYN GOMEZ

Many students have had Mark Perkins as a teacher or coach since they started at Orangewood High School and he’s always made them feel welcomed and acknowledged as students. He also motivates students to finish school and aim for success. Perkins is a favorite teacher for many students and plays a role as a model teacher at Orangewood.

Perkins, who is physical education teacher, coach of all four sports and athletic director at Orangewood, answers twenty questions about himself.

Mark Perkins, Orangewood High School physical education teacher and coach, huddles with members of the Orangewood soccer team. (JOCELYN GOMEZ/ Ethic News photo)

Q: What is your position or title? Pronouns?

Mark Perkins: He, him and Mr.

Education

Mark Perkins, Orangewood High School physical education teacher and coach, looks on as the soccer team practices at Orangewood. (JOCELYN GOMEZ/ Ethic News photo)

Q: What are some of the classes you teach or main responsibilities with this position?

Perkins: Athletics Director, Coach, PE teacher

Q: How long have you worked in education?

Perkins: 28 years

Q: Have you held any jobs outside of education?

Perkins: Not really, I have always been a teacher.

Q: What led you to the position you are in today?

Perkins: I had an uncle that was a PE teacher, this was the spark that got me thinking about teaching P.E.

Q: What is one of your favorite parts of your job?

Perkins: Finding the students that are the diamonds but don’t know it yet!

Q: What is a challenging part of your job?

Perkins: The drama that the students have. It is hard to deal with every situation perfectly and drama complicates that.

Q: What is something others may not understand or know about who you are or what you do?

Perkins: I push students to be successful and sometimes that is misunderstood.

Mark Perkins, Orangewood High School physical education teacher and coach, huddles with members of the boys and girls soccer teams at Orangewood. Perkins coaches all sports at Orangewood: basketball, soccer, volley ball and softball. (JOCELYN GOMEZ/ Ethic News photo)

Growing up and Early Influences

Q: Where did you grow up? What was life like then and there?

Perkins: Ontario Canada is where I grew up. It is very green there and not very many people live there compared to the USA. So we have lots of country around us.

Q: What were you like as a teenager?

Perkins: I was really into sports and exercise, surprise surprise. 

Q: Did you have any mentors or role models growing up? How did they influence you?

Perkins: I had an uncle that was a P.E. teacher. When I was in the 8th grade I found out that in college you could go to school and be a P.E. teacher. I had no idea before that P.E. was a college degree.

Q: Is there an experience or event that had a major influence on who or where you are today?

Perkins: In college I took a job fishing in Alaska. My boat sank and I floated around in the ocean for seven hours until someone found my group.

Q: What advice would you give your teenage-self?

Perkins: I would tell me to not be afraid to share your emotions with the person you trust the most in life.

Mark Perkins, Orangewood High School physical education teacher and coach, stands by the field before a soccer match at Orangewood. (JOCELYN GOMEZ/ Ethic News photo)

Mr. Perkins Today

Q: Do you like to travel? What notable places have you visited?

Perkins: I do like to travel. France, Switzerland, Germany, Italy are places in Europe I have visited.

Q: Which languages do you speak?

Perkins: I only speak English.

Q: What music do you like and do you play any instruments?

Perkins: 80’s Rock and when I was in high school I played the saxophone.

Q: Would you be willing to share a little about your family and/or pets?

Perkins: I have been married for 31 years and have two daughters, [ages] 21 and 24. Pets include two dogs, one Chihuahua mix — wife’s dog — and a purebred Dutch Shepherd — my dog.

Q: Do you have skills, interests or hobbies that you would like to share?

Perkins: I love computers. I know how to use both PC and Mac computers. In addition to weight lifting, I also enjoy biking and the beach.

Q: What do you enjoy doing most with family and friends?

Perkins: I enjoy going to church, the beach, movies and hanging out with my friends.

Q: What is a goal you have?

Perkins: I want to travel more. Once my kids have both graduated from college, my wife and I want to see more countries of the world.

Review: “Wake Me When I’m Free” multimedia exhibit explores Tupac’s life beyond rap

By KAELEE CONTRERAS 

Located in Los Angeles, California, the Tupac museum experience, “Wake Me When I’m Free,” is a tribute to the late rapper Tupac Shakur and the significance of his life. Not only is this museum filled with amazing visuals and exhibits, but it also shares many of Tupac’s poems, songs and his upbringing.

One of Tupac’s poems displayed in the entrance of the museum. (KAELEE CONTRERAS/ Ethic News photo)


This museum was a listening experience and required a headset to listen to Tupac’s music, his interviews, events that took place in his life, and much more. Simply aim the remote at a small sensor and listen to the audio designated with the exhibit.

An example of the remote is displayed in the image on the right. (KAELEE CONTRERAS/ Ethic News photo)

As visitors walk through the museum and view these stunning exhibits, they are able to listen to the meaning and background story to each section and also get to take time for photo opportunities. One of my favorite visuals is the painting of Tupac as seen in the middle image above. (KAELEE CONTRERAS/ Ethic News photo)

Tupac’s music, poetry and life had a very big impact on the world and has inspired millions of people to express themselves and pursue their dreams. He was a positive role model for people and was a very talented and influential artist. (KAELEE CONTRERAS/ Ethic News photo)

One room of the exhibit was filled with a rose scent and displayed falling petals along with with an excerpt from a poem written by Tupac. (KAELEE CONTRERAS/ Ethic News photo)

Tupac Shakur was widely known for being one of the best-selling music artists and sold more than 75 million records worldwide. What a majority of people don’t know about Tupac is how he began his music career as a rebel with a cause to fight for injustices endured by people of color. His music brought awareness to injustices, gun control, equality, social injustices, immoral acts and many other world issues. Due to his gangsta rap music aesthetic, a majority of people misunderstood what he stood for and saw him as a bad influence and a nusiance for society and youth.

Growing up, Tupac lived with his mother and his sister and lived a very difficult childhood. His mother, Afeni Shakur, was an American political activist and a previous member of the Black Panther party. Due to being charged with drug possession, Afeni was arrested and pregnant with Tupac while imprisoned. 

Tupac’s childhood included a lot of literature, and also him getting into trouble and involved with the company of criminals. He was exposed to violence at a very young age.

The young artist began rapping at the age of 14 and started making music to project his political view and fight against racial injustices poetically.

Tupac’s music career took off after he studied poetry, theater and music in high school and soon after became a roadie and backup dancer for the rap group Digital Underground in 1990. The growth of his music career and talent was very significant and his legacy still lives  on today even after his life was unjustly taken from him at such a young age.

The museum exhibit features information on Tupac’s mother, Afeni Shakur, and the Black Panther Party. (KAELEE CONTRERAS/ Ethic News photo)

Video: 50 Questions with Ethic – Berkeley bound Wildcat chats candidly

Interviewed by MAURICIO PLIEGO

Filmed by ELLA FITZPATRICK and DANIELA MORA

Directed by ISAAC MEJIA

Come join Ethic News as they interview Redlands East Valley High School senior Arnie Corpus. Corpus responds to questions about his future at University of California, Berkley and on the badminton team winning first place in the Citrus Belt League this year. As always, Corpus answers fast, controversial “this or that” questions at the end of the interview.

The Decoders Podcast: Talking about the Tupac “Wake Me When I’m Free” Exhibit

Hosted by MARCO GARCIA GARCIA, SYDNEY HAMMONDS and CARLIE GONZALEZ

7 minute listen

Twenty students from Orangewood High School took a field trip to the Tupac Shakur “Wake Me When I’m Free” Exhibit in Los Angeles on April 27. Carlie Gonzalez, junior, asks Marco Garcia Garcia, junior, and Sydney Hammons, senior, about their experience visiting the exhibit and about Tupac overall.

Opinion: Students need a better system to report inappropriate staff behavior

By SPENCER MOORE

In eighth grade, the students in an honors science class were quietly finishing a water cycle worksheet as their ears catch the sound of a young man, watching a YouTube video on his phone. The piercing silence was perforated by this sudden blast of car noises, coming from the video the boy was watching. The teacher, frustrated by this mild act of defiance, grabs a chair nearby her desk, thrusts it above her head, and slams it onto the floor, creating a deafening roar. This was one of the first instances in which students suddenly realized that teachers needed to be held more accountable for their actions. From the perspective of the students in this classroom, this teacher received no consequence for their inappropriate behavior, and continued instruction the next day.

This event shaped much of the student body’s perception of this teacher. It was one of the first times in which students realized that as they get older, they must be treated as such, as with the increased responsibility of growing up, it also comes with a greater need for mutual respect. Across the district, many examples of teachers overstepping their boundaries have occurred either at the elementary, middle, or high schools. There are teachers who use their authority to silence discussions outside of what they believe to be true, not to mention the problematic power dynamics that exist in the intrapersonal relationships that the students have with their teachers. Any opinions shared by students are lambasted by these specific teachers, almost to the point of public mockery. While it is cruel and unhelpful to defame or otherwise degrade the character of these teachers on a public scale, this is illustrative of a greater trend at the Redlands Unified School District.

Currently, students have no official way to evaluate their courses, nor report teachers specifically for their inappropriate behavior. The only format for students to voice their concerns is through their assigned counselors, who have been known to, on numerous occasions, dismiss the concerns of the student and write it off as teenage angst and attitude.  It is crucially important, however, that the district establishes a secure line for students to evaluate their courses.

Not every poorly behaved teacher is acting in these extreme manners, though, as there are some who simply do not input grades regularly, give unstructured and unfocused lessons, and have personal issues that bleed into their teaching responsibilities. One major way for teachers to be evaluated is through standardized testing, whether it be at the district, state, or national level. This has its own problems though, as many students suffer from test anxiety, and others don’t pay attention to instruction, it is not fair for the quality of a teacher to be judged through the work their students complete.

Most major collegiate level institutions already have a system for evaluations of courses directly by the students, so why shouldn’t high schools? Many opponents of this idea have brought up the fact that college students are acting as customers of their school, but high school students are not, therefore they should not be permitted to review a service that they do not pay for. This equivalency is false as by federal law, all minors are required to receive some form of schooling. If they do not, the parents and/or legal guardians will be fined and in some extreme cases, the children are taken from their homes. If students are required to attend a school, would it not be more imperative that they are able to share their thoughts and concerns? Not all of these evaluations are needed for reasons as innocent as simply not doing their job very well, sometimes the behavior requires further measures to cease inappropriate personal conduct.

The SpriGeo system, buried under tabs and links on the district and school websites, has been recently put into place to address harassment concerns on campuses but it is not specifically designed for reporting of interactions and behaviors of teachers and other staff members. Many students feel that they still do not have a secure line to specifically address the issues that come up with campus staff.

The system further has problems lying in the fact that in the actual report filing program, it states that their grade should be listed, if known, and it suggests that students talk to an administrator, completely negating this premise of anonymity, not to mention how it asks for the person reporting the issue’s name. While optional, it may lead students to believe that the promise of anonymity is misleading. This ignorance of teacher harassment and misbehavior further isolates the student from putting a stop to the issue.

Teacher accountability is not limited to only the behavior that they exhibit in their instruction though, as it also extends to the personal relationships they share with students. RUSD has paid over 41 million dollars within the last five years in settlement money for sexual harrassment lawsuits alone. This number far exceeds any competing figures in other school districts. Unprofessional and off putting behavior could have been reported earlier, possibly even stopping some of these cases from ever occurring. If the school district decided to create and heavily publicize lines of help for these specific instances we would likely have a great deal fewer cases of this abuse. The SpriGeo system, while a step in the right direction, needs further improvement and clarification as to what types of reports it accepts.

The board of RUSD are elected to their offices by local citizens, to serve the adults of the community and their children, while providing the highest quality school environments they can, as it is crucial to the benefit of their education to give students a safe and secure place to learn. It is the campus staff and teacher’s job to keep their students safe and provide them with the highest possible level of quality in education, which also includes a good environment for students to work in. 

An image of the safety section of the RUSD 2025 plan. Other sections of this plan can be found at RUSD.net

The district pushes forward its ‘RUSD 2025’ plan, and while to the general populace, this is regarded as a step into the right direction, and even into the future, it makes very little substantive progress in regards to the safety of students. The 2025 plan does make mention of safety in Redlands schools, but frames every point made in regards to safety as an outside issue, as opposed to pointing the lens of misbehavior upon itself, which unfortunately is where most of the danger lies. Excellence in education may be the district slogan, but it certainly is not the district standard.

Correction: The last two paragraphs and image were accidentally omitted in the original publishing of this post at 8:30 pm on May 12, 2022. It was corrected at 9:13 pm on May 12, 2022.

Redlands Educational Partnership hosts basketball fundraiser with Harlem Wizards in Wildcat Gym

By AILEEN JANEE CORPUS

“A high-flying, slam dunking, rim-rattling basketball show is coming to town!” said the email sent to Redlands East Valley High School students the day before the Harlem Wizards basketball game.

In an effort to raise funds for the Redlands Education Partnership, REP hosted the Harlem Wizards for a fun and friendly game of basketball versus Redlands Unified School District staff on Friday, April 22 at the Wildcat Gym.

Both sides of the gym were packed with students, family, and staff members from the various Redlands schools including Franklin Elementary School, Crafton Elementary School, Kimberly Elementary School, Redlands High School and REV.

“It was fun for the kids,” said REV senior Arnie James Corpus. “[The Wizards] got the crowd going and I think people who came got a good show.”

Hailing from Fairfield, New Jersey, the Harlem Wizards, not to be confused with the Harlem Globetrotters despite both teams’ similar comical antics, was originally found by Howie Davis who had “a passion for the merger of sports and entertainment,” according to the Harlem Wizards website, and have five different team units: Broadway  Unit, Showtime Unit, Swoop Unit, Rocket Unit, and Assembly and Special Events Unit.

For the REP game, the crowd saw the Broadway Unit of the Harlem Wizards which included Eric “Broadway” Jones, Arnold “A-Train” Bernard, Devon “Livewire” Curry, Lloyd “Loonatik” Clinton and Leon “Space Jam” Sewell.

The players who played on behalf of the REP Rebounders were Redlands teachers, classified employees and administrators. The team captain was RUSD Superintendent Mauricio Arellano. Bill Berich, REV history teacher and recently retired head basketball coach, was the coach for the REP Rebounders.

“My favorite moments of the game were watching the staff and the Wizards play, but also, honestly and most important, was just seeing those faces in the crowd having a good time,” said Sabrina Thunderface Mercado, AP Secretary from Cope Middle School, who was the shortest player on the team at 4 feet and 11 inches. 

Mercado says she volunteered to play because she “thought it would be fun for my 19-year-old son to see his Mom out on the court playing ball with The Harlem Wizards. He loves basketball.” 

(MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News visual)

The referees of the game included Redlands East Valley High School’s new athletic director, Chad Blatchley. Brandon Ford, sociology and career foundations teacher and softball coach, Ted Ducey, badminton coach and earth science teacher and Ryan Parson, teacher, also represented REV. RHS Advanced Placement Teacher and Volleyball Coach Nathan Smith joined the high school teacher players.

“The game itself was a lot of fun and I hope it raised a lot of money,” said Smith, “I would play it again.”

Middle school staff players were Mercado, TeAnna Bermudez and Kiele Pratt from Cope and Matthew Villalva from Moore.

“Joining in on the fun, especially after the last few years we’ve had, where people couldn’t hang out with each other, students weren’t in school like normal. It was great to have some normalcy return to us all,” said Mercado.

Elementary schools staff players included Jennie Dyerly from Crafton, Jeff Stamners from Cram, and Natalie Wood from Judson and Brown, Carolyn Bradshaw from Kimberly, Scott Ferguson from Lugonia, John Smith from from McKinley, Damion Sinor from Mentone and Jeff Doolittle from Mission. Franklin Elementary had Rebecca Acosta, Erick Nowak, Katy Swift, Leah Timpe and Alexis Padilla participating in the game.

Numerous sponsors supported the game including Pacific Dermatology Institute, Redlands Police Officers Association, Redlands Community Hospital, Maupin Physical Advisors, Welsh Insurance Services, Neal and Joyce Waner, Holiday Inn Express, Trader Joe’s and Chick-fil-A.

As soon as one team got the lead, the other managed to tie the game again, but despite this pattern throughout the majority of the game, the Harlem Wizards left the Wildcat gym triumphant.
The Redlands Educational Partnership website  has more information on their programs and donations.

Before the game started, Jamel “The Voice” Thompson, brought by the Harlem Wizards, played music to hype up players and audience members. Thompson and Redlands East Valley High School announcer Kirk Escher watch the Harlem Wizards warmup. (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/Ethic News photo)

Teachers from some of Redlands’ elementary schools took part in the game, and mascots from Cope middle school and Clement middle school stood in front of the crowd while watching the court. (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/Ethic News photo)

The REP team is seen standing in a line while high-fiving their coach Bill Berich as he runs past them with his name being announced. Berich is retiring this year from being Redlands East Valley High School’s boys’ varsity basketball coach. (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/Ethic News photo)

Both the REP Rebounders and the Harlem Wizards leave the Redlands East Valley High School basketball court while waving to the fans. The game ended with the Harlem Wizards magically winning. (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/ Ethic News photo)

Chad Blatchley, one of the referees of the game and Redlands East Valley High School’s athletic director, watches the game as the bleachers are packed with families, students, and staff. (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/Ethic News photo)

With the Harlem Wizards already having a lead of eight points, their player Devon “Livewire” Curry attempted a backwards half court shot, and when the ball fell in the hoop, the players and crowd alike erupted into cheers. (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/Ethic News photo)

Both the REP Rebounders and the Harlem Wizards leave the Redlands East Valley High School basketball court while waving to the fans. The game ended with the Harlem Wizards magically winning. (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/ Ethic News photo)

Citrus Valley’s Lindsey Chau kicks off into a new season of her life

By JASMINE ROSALES

Lindsey Chau, a senior at Citrus Valley High School and girls varsity soccer captain, reflects on her time in high school as she prepares for the University of San Francisco with a Division I soccer scholarship.

 “My biggest accomplishment so far is either getting Offensive MVP for CBL for the second year in a row or getting Athlete of the Meet at CBL track finals,” Chau says. 

Lindsey Chau receives her Most Valued Player Award at the 2021-22 soccer season banquet. (Courtesy of Hung Chau)

With her senior year coming to an end, it is bittersweet.

Chau says, “I’m going to miss my high school soccer team so much. I made some of my best friends and had an amazing time playing soccer. We’ve accomplished so much as a team so I’ll definitely miss that.”

Chau has also had an impact on the people she has crossed paths with.  

Ava Lopez, a sophomore at Citrus Valley says, “Lindsey is all around a great person and player. She genuinely cares about you whether it be on or off the field. She is so humble. She is truly a one of a kind player, teammate, and person.”

Natalie Thoe, a junior from Citrus Valley, shares, ”Lindsey is one of the most hardworking people I know. She is the definition of heart when it comes to anything. I’m so lucky to have had a chance to work with and learn from such a great player and I cannot wait to see what she does next.”

These past four years, including the COVID year, were tough on everyone. Chau admits that these past years have caused her to grow as a person. 

Chau says, “The past four years has allowed me to mature from a teenager into a young woman. I look at things in a more positive light and love to take on challenges.”

“Frankly, COVID took a huge toll on my life mentally and my junior year of high school was very hard,” says Chau. “Although I struggled, I was able to find a new version of myself that’s much stronger, open-minded, and excited to take on the world.”

Looking on the bright side in every situation, Chau pushed forward. 

Currently, her favorite hobbies include spending time with her boyfriend, hanging out with her friends, playing soccer and running track.

Chau’s overall goal in life is to run her own business, or become a professional soccer player for the National Women’s Soccer League. 

Taking possession of the ball, #10 Lindsey Chau drives the ball up the field. (Courtesy of Hung Chau)

“My biggest role model is Pelé because he was a young teen from Brazil who didn’t come from much but was able to make it out and become one of the greatest soccer players of all time,” said Chau. He has such finesse and fire to him which makes him so admirable.”

Chau earned a Division I scholarship to the University of San Francisco. Before making a decision, Chau did her research on all her offers and USF had exactly what she wanted. The last step was to visit the campus and it sold her. 

Chau will be majoring in business analytics at USF and says she can’t wait for what the future holds.

Celebrating Mother’s Day at Citrus Valley: Students express appreciation for their moms on campus

By ETHIC NEWS STAFF

In honor of Mother’s Day on May 8, Citrus Valley High School students give appreciation to their mothers that work on campus. The following students responded to what they cherished about their mothers, what it is like to share a campus with their mother and if they had a message to say to their mothers.

Michelle Stover, chemistry teacher:

“I cherish her enthusiasm and care for her students.”

“It’s nice because I get snacks.”

“I love you mom.”

Michelle Stover is Citrus Valley’s General and Advanced Placement Chemistry teacher and her daughter Julianna is a sophomore at Citrus Valley. (Photo courtesy by Julianna Stover)

Kari Hill, Career Center Coordinator:

“I cherish how loving and helping she always is to me.”

“Having my mom on campus is the best because she can always give me advice where to go or what to do and help me with colleges.”

“A message I would like to give my mom would be thank you for everything you’ve done for me in the past 18 years. Now, I’m structuring a great future because of everything you’ve helped me understand and learn.”

– Ryan Hill, senior

Kari Hill is Citrus Valley’s Career Center Teacher/College-Career Counselor and her son is senior Ryan Hill. (Photo courtesy by Ryan Hill)

Kelly Teeter, counseling clerk:

“She’s really lovely, she takes care of me, she puts food on my plate, provides me with everything I need and she takes really good care of me.”

“For me, it’s nice because I’m diabetic so if something happens to me she’s there for me. She doesn’t have to worry so it’s nice for her too, and it’s just nice having her here.”

“Thank you, thank you for doing everything you do and thank you for being here.”

– Lucas Teeter, freshman

Kelly Teeter is a counseling clerk at Citrus Valley and her son is Citrus Valley freshman Lucas Teeter. (Photo courtesy by Lucas Teeter)

Maisie McCue, principal:

“I think that she is very empathetic and compassionate so she can help you through lots of stuff just because she’s able to relate.”

“It’s interesting but I’ve already had her on my campus for three years because she was my middle school principal also. But like, middle school was a little better than high school though. It’s still nice though, being able to see her every day at school.”

“Just that I love and appreciate you.”

– Kylie McCue, sophomore

Masie McCue is the principle of Citrus Valley, and her daughter is Citrus Valley sophomore Kylie McCue. (Photo courtesy by Kylie McCue)

Joan Snavely, telepresence paraprofessional aide:

“I cherish the fact that my mom is someone I can count on to be there for me.”

“Some people think having your mom on campus could be tiring, but its definitely made my high school experience easier. Whether it’s using her microwave for lunch or always having a classroom that I can feel safe in, she’s always been there for me.”

“Thanks for all the snacks during passing period, and bringing me a little bit of home while I’m in school.”

– Maggie Snavely, senior

Joan Snavely is the telepresence aide for Citrus Valley, and her daughter is Citrus Valley senior Maggie Snavely. (Photo courtesy by Maggie Snavely)

At Citrus Valley, these individuals take on the dual role of mother and staff member and this Mother’s Day their children’s appreciation for them does not go unnoticed.

Featured Photo: Ethic News thanks mothers everywhere. (Emily Walos/Ethic news image)

Video: 50 Questions with Ethic – Guadalajara native Dona Ayala chats candidly

Interviewed by MAURICIO PLIEGO

Filmed by ELLA FITZPATRICK and DANIELA MORA

Directed by ISAAC MEJIA

Translated by DANIELA MORA

Come join Ethic News as they interview Redlands East Valley High School Guadalajara native Dona Ayala. Ayala responds to questions in Spanish about her life inside and outside of school as well as maintaining her culture in America.  As always, Ayala answers fast, controversial “this or that” questions at the end of the interview.

Redlands East Valley High School boys basketball coach Bill Berich retires

By AILEEN JANEE CORPUS and MAURICIO PLIEGO

Bill Berich has been involved in education for 41 years and has been a teacher and coach at Redlands East Valley since its opening in 1997.

Berich says, “I wanted to get back into coaching high school basketball – and REV was opening up so I applied.”

In an away game against the Redlands High School boys varsity basketball team, Redlands East Valley High School boys’ varsity basketball coach Bill Berich dismisses his team from a timeout. The end of the game resulted in a win for the Wildcats. (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/ Ethic News photo)

He taught at Yucaipa Junior High for two years, 13 years in Yucaipa High School, and 25 years at REV. Berich has taught social studies, physical education, health, English and science classes over the course of his career along with coaching basketball and several other sports. 

Berich says, “I have so much fun teaching. I am not the best teacher, but I doubt anyone enjoys it as much as I do. I like helping kids [who want to be helped] and seeing them succeed.”

 “I have so much fun teaching. I am not the best teacher, but I doubt anyone enjoys it as much as I do.”

Bill Berich, Redlands East Valley High School Head Boys Basketball Coach

Head coach Bill Berich (far right) watches his team rejoicing as Redlands East Valley High School senior Piave Fitzpatrick and junior Jeremiah Bolaños jump with enthusiasm after winning their final CBL game of the 2021-22 basketball season in an overtime clinch. (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/ Ethic News photo)

Berich has coached basketball for 43 years and that has included six years in freshman basketball, seven seasons as the head boys’ varsity coach from 1986-1993, four seasons as assistant coach at the University of Redlands from 1993-1997 and has been head coach at REV since 1997.

Along with basketball, he has coached for softball, golf, track, junior varsity softball and badminton.

During his time as a coach at REV, basketball has won four Kiwanis Tournaments, two Beaumont Tournaments, four Citrus Belt League and several other tournaments. Since REV’s opening in 1997, the team has qualified for the California Interscholastic Federation playoffs for 20 out of the 25 years.

Redlands East Valley High School boys’ varsity basketball coach Bill Berich stands on the sideline during the first and last CIF game for the Wildcats of the 2021-2022 season on Feb. 11, 2022. (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/ Ethic News photo)

As coach, Berich can think of two memories that he can say were his favorites but he cannot choose a favorite season.

He says, “CIF Finals at the Honda Center in 2015. Winning a game in the State Tournament.  Our first CBL Title.  But, maybe above all of that, was the retirement send-off I was given at our last home game on February 4, 2022. That was amazing.”

Over the years, he has grown to love the students, faculty and everyone who works at REV. Berich feels it has “become infectious” and feels blessed to have taught at REV.

Coach Berich speaks to the Redlands Educational Partnership Rebounders team in hopes to lead them through the game against the comedic, traveling basketball team the Harlem Wizards. (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/ Ethic News photo)

As the coach for the REP Rebounders, Bill Berich talks to his team of Redlands’ teachers, classified employees and administrators before they begin their fundraising basketball game against the comedic basketball team the Harlem Wizards on April 22, 2022. (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/ Ethic News photo)

The only thing he would change is to hold the students to a higher standard regarding attendance, academics and behavior because he feels that it would be possible to do.

Berich lives by the Golden Rule, and he believes that students should know that “what is popular is not always right, and what is right is not always popular.”

He says, “I try to treat people the way I would like to be treated. I try to do my best and take satisfaction in that regardless of the results.”

During his free time, he golfs, fishes, and takes care of his disabled son, Billy. For his retirement, he hopes to be able to teach at a junior college, or community college, and continue fishing, golfing, and boating.

Originally an assistant coach to Berich, Head Coach Mike Aranda has coached REV basketball since the 1999-2000 season.

 “He has worked very hard over the years to build up the REV basketball program. We’ve won CBL titles, preseason tournaments, a state playoff game, and reached the CIF Final in 2015,”  says Aranda. “He cares deeply about his players but not just in regard to their basketball abilities, he wants his players to be successful in all aspects of life. He’s taught his players about responsibility, work ethic, and accountability to prepare them for their lives after their basketball career is over.”

Aranda says, “I am very thankful to Coach Berich for his help and guidance in my coaching and teaching career.”

News brief: Advanced Placement testing exams have begun

By ELLA FITZPATRICK

Since the beginning of the school year, high school students in the Redlands Unified School District, and around the country, have been preparing for the Advanced Placement exams offered by the College Board.

Taking place during the first two weeks of May 2022, from May 2 to 13, each AP exam takes approximately two to four hours, depending on the subject of testing.

At Redlands East Valley High School, students are expected to show up to their assigned test start time and testing sites. Testing will take place at J-35, J-23 or the media center at 8 a.m. and 12 p.m.

News brief: Redlands Unified School District elementary school bands visit Citrus Valley

By DESTINY RAMOS

The Redlands Unified School District’s elementary school bands visited Citrus Valley High School for performances and instruction on Tuesday, April 14. The elementary schools included Bryn Mawr, Mission, Crafton, Highland Grove and Victoria. Beattie Middle School’s sixth and seventh grade band members also made an appearance.

During their visit, the fourth and fifth grade students sat through a performance by the third period Wind Ensemble. The advanced group has worked for many weeks preparing for the kids and their performance of “Carnegie Anthem,” “Amparito Roca,” and “Star Trek Theme,” which will also be performed at the spring concert in May.

After the ensemble was finished, the elementary students were able to perform for the high school students while getting music tips from other music coordinators who also visited Citrus Valley. By the end of their workshop, the ensemble students claimed they could hear improvement in the children’s playing.

The fifth and fourth graders of the Redlands Unified School District enjoy a day full of music at Citrus Valley High School on April 14. (DESTINY RAMOS/ Ethic News photo)

News brief: Redlands East Valley’s class of 2022 celebrates senior commit day

By ELLA FITZPATRICK

The Redlands East Valley senior class of 2022 gathered at lunch on April 29 to celebrate senior commit day—an event to recognize the future graduates education plans after high school.

Between the M and K buildings at REV, the Associated Student Body set up a small gathering of free pizza, soda and chips for the seniors attending college in the fall.

Because the grass yard between both buildings was closed off for only seniors, the students were able to enjoy the lunch with themselves and connect with each other about their plans for college.

“It was nice being able to see where other people are committed to. It makes it feel as if we’re going our separate ways but we’ll always have a shared high school experience,” says Alicia Gullon, a senior at REV with plans to attend University of California, Berkeley.

“It makes it feel as if we’re going our separate ways but we’ll always have a shared high school experience.”

Redlands East Valley High School senior Alicia Gullon

Along with eating food, the students could also take photos together in front of the photo booth with friends and sign a banner with their name and the college they plan on attending.

Between the M and K buildings at Redlands East Valley High School, Wildcat seniors Prescott Neiswender and Katelyn Kennedy pose in front of a decorated photo booth to take a photo for Senior Commit Day on April 29 during lunch. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley seniors Giselle Sefiane Coady, Ella Martinez-Spencer, Luca Smith and Corey Ford sign a banner with their names and the colleges they plan on attending in the fall on Senior Commit Day at REV on April 29. ( ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic News photo)

News brief: Students invited to participate in Redlands Day of Community Service

By JASMINE ROSALES and SPENCER MOORE

All students in Redlands are invited to participate in the Redlands Day of Community Service on Saturday, May 7 from 8:30 am to noon.  

Steven Mapes, community member, invites everyone of all ages to come out and take part in the Redlands Day of community service. Mapes encourages students to wear their respective school colors to uplift others by seeing the youth serving in our community.

Digital image representing a day of community service created using Adobe Spark (MAURICIO PLIEGO/ Ethic image)

“One of the best things about the Community Day of Service is the way that it brings so many different people together,” said Judy Cannon, Director of Communications for the Redlands Stake of Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints. “We have all age groups and affiliations working alongside each other. It’s part of what makes Redlands so great.”

Students can obtain volunteer hours and take pride in their community by partaking in Redlands Day of Community Service.

“Some of our favorite volunteers are the students from our local high schools. They bring their youthful energy and a unique spirit of fun to the day,” said Cannon.

To volunteer visit Just Serve and search for “Redlands Day of Service May 7th, 2022.”  From there, choose a project to participate in.

The projects to choose from are: Heritage Park-Grounds Landscaping, State Street Planters, Redlands Sports Park Fence-Painting,  Ford Park Pond Stabilization and Gateway Ranch Cable Fencing.

For more information visit Just Serve: Annual Redlands Community Day of Service

Wildcat artists place at San Bernardino County art show

By CYRUS ENGELSMAN

Several Redlands East Valley High School students received recognition for their art on March 15.

The Young Artists Gallery Reception is an annual event hosted by the San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools and Riverside Inyo Mono San Bernardino

California Arts Project in association with The Arts Education Network.  

A total of 27 schools entered the competition and 177 pieces of art were judged for the event.  The categories of the show were drawing, painting, printmaking, photography, digital art, comic art, ceramics, mixed media and film/animation.  

Out of the 177 pieces of art juried at the show, there were four winners from REV. 

“Living in life, that’s probably the best inspiration that I get,” says second place winner REV sophomore Mia Altenbac said. “Things that just come naturally I find inspiration from that.” 

The following art pieces are the winners from REV.  The winners were also recognized at REV’s spring rally on April 8.

Redlands East Valley High School student Jay Gutierrez, third place winner, sends in this piece for the art category. (Courtesy of Tracy Massimiano)

Redlands East Valley High School senior Luke Loomis wins second place with a ceramic cup for the competition. (Courtesy of Tracy Massimiano)

Second place winner Mia Altenbach has her digital art piece sent in for the competition. (Courtesy of Tracy Massimiano)

First place winner and Redlands East Valley sophomore, Matthew Thorig, displays their drawing piece.  (Courtesy of Tracy Massimiano)

Season recap: Blackhawk girl soccer are three-peat league champs

By JASMINE ROSALES

Citrus Valley High School’s girls’ varsity soccer team circle up and begin their cheer to pump each other up before kickoff (Courtesy of Mike Mccue)

Since Dec. 1, 2021, the soccer season at Citrus Valley High School has been underway. From preseason to league, the soccer girls have worked hard during their practices. From 6 a.m. to after school practices, they are dedicated to crushing every game.

At the beginning of the league, the varsity team felt they had a target on their back after being the top team in their district and back-to-back Citrus Belt League champions. Starting off with preseason, everyone worked on strengthening weak points. 

The first league game for Citrus Valley was Jan. 5 at Cajon High School. The Blackhawks came out strong with a win of 7-1. With another away game against Redlands East Valley High School on Jan. 7, the team again took the win against the Wildcats with a 3-0 victory. 

The third game of the league and the first home game of the season was against their rival Yucaipa High School. The Thunderbirds and Blackhawks battle it out on the pitch. Citrus Valley comes out hard from the start and wins the game against YHS 3-1 with a goal from Blackhawk senior Lindsey Chau, junior Natalie Thoe and sophomore Sasha Mezcua. 

After their third consecutive win, varsity girls made their way to Terrier town against Redlands High School. Working together, the Blackhawks scores ten goals on the scoreboard and earns a final score of 10-1.

Teammates No. 10 Lindsey Chau, No. 15 Vanessa Alcala celebrate with No. 8 Elizabeth Northcott after scoring a goal against the Terriers. (Courtesy of Hung Chau)

The team followed up with a home game against Beaumont, finishing against the Cougars with a win of 3-1. Wrapping up the first round of games, Citrus Valley girl’s varsity held a streak of five wins. 

Round two brought each team head-to-head one more time, starting from the top Citrus Valley had a home game against Cajon. Cajon comes in strong while Citrus Valley matches up and plays strategically. Through teamwork, they came out on top and beat the Cowgirls 2-1.

The following week, Citrus Valley went head-to-head against the Wildcats on Wednesday Jan. 26. The teams battles it out and approximately 80 minutes later, the Blackhawks are victorious beating REV 3-0. Shutting out the Wildcats and keeping their league record undefeated. 

With a challenging game ahead of them, Assistant Varsity Coach Allen Thoe said, “We used our recordings of the games and watch the film before practice. We mainly use this to devise what system we will be using, in this case, we went with a 4-3-3, but we also use it to highlight any specific players to watch out for.” 

After filming and taking note of what needs to be brought to attention, the team traveled to Yucaipa. The girls warmed up and got pumped up for the game. With a hard battle from both defenses and shots on goal from offense, Citrus Valley kicked five goals into the back of the net. Pushing through and using their studying from the previous practice, the girls find the weak points and use it to their advantage to break through and win against the Thunderbirds for the second time this season with a final score of 5-1. 

With only two games left of CBL, the varsity girls gave it their all when they went up against Redlands High School. The Blackhawks started strong in Hodges stadium a little before 5 p.m with warm ups, followed up with shots on goal and long kicks from defenders. Leaving everything on the field, the game finished up with a final score of 3-0, Blackhawks with the win. 

In the final league game, the players took the bus and enjoyed the ride to Beaumont to face the Cougars. The whistle was blown and the girls on the sidelines ran to cheer with the players on the field as they celebrate their win of 3-0 and their record of ten wins and zero losses. 

With an undefeated season, the girls and the seniors celebrated all their hard work as undefeated league champs for the past three consecutive years. 

The varsity girls pose with coach Norma Mendez after their last Citrus Belt League game. (Courtesy of Hung Chau)

Citrus Valley hosts 2022 prom fashion show

By EMILY WALOS 

Lights, Camera, Wonderland. 

On March 18 2022, Citrus Valley High School’s Associative Student Body put on their annual prom fashion show; however this year there was a twist. At the show, all information including the prom theme, date, ticket prices, and location were released.  

Citrus Valley’s prom theme was released by ASB senior secretary,  Miyah Lopez and social member, Bella Moreno, opening a banner that displayed “Ace: a Night of Wonder.” 

The theme is based off of the fictional story of Alice in Wonderland, specifically the characters the King and Queen of Hearts. 

Prom is scheduled to take place at Desert Willow Golf Course from 7-11 p.m. 

The fashion show itself contained seven groups, three couples and, a new addition to the show this year, four groups of three. 

The show began at the beginning of lunch in front of the E-building with the masters of ceremonies Senior Pep commissioner  Elise Kollar and Junior President Sydney Hageali gathering students around the runway. From there the first couple, senior model Ariana Nelson and senior model Landon Campos, were announced. 

After each couple or group made their way down the runway, they split at the end of the risers and each hit three poses. They then came back together and performed a handshake. Each handshake was unique, from twirls to dips to even money flying into the crowd. 

Trio senior model Sierra Alexi, senior model Wendy Gonzalez, and senior model Luchiano Swidan utilized real money during their handshake as the three of them threw a combined total of $100 in fives into the crowd. 

Students where able to grab and keep the money that was thrown into the crowd (BELLA ESPINOZA/Ethic News)

Alexi stated that, “I remember when we first threw money, it was unexpected because the whole crowd was just standing there stunned but then the realization and excitement kicked in and they started running to get the money.” 

The stage itself was ornately decorated in the theme “Deck of Cards,” as all four styles of playing cards were used. The runway was lined with cards as well as a black carpet to match the color theme of black, white, red, and gold. Cards were scattered over the windows that provided the backdrop to the runway, as well as on the poles that hung over and next to the stage. 

Balloons played a key factor in the show as three were placed on each side of the runway as well as a massive balloon arch in the theme colors that flew above the stage. 

During the reveal of the theme, single bouquets of balloons were brought out to be given to the audience. Hand decorated crowns were also brought out with the balloons. On the crowns the theme name was front and center, and students were able to wear them for the remainder of the school day. 

Clothing for the show was provided both by the sponsor Men’s Wearhouse, as well as personal items each model had at home. Men’s Wearhouse provided the show with six suits. Each boy that was provided a suit was able to choose from any of the selections that the store provided them. 

This year was the first year ASB utilized fully volunteered models. (BELLA ESPINOZA/Ethic News)

Steve Guiterrez, a senior that walked in the first ever boy trio, “They [Mens Wearhouse employees] treated us kindly even though it was completely sponsored by them, they treated us with respect and they made sure we were fitted and knew how to get dresses without their help.” 

Model include: Ariana Nelson, Landon Campos, Brody Moss, Madisen Habchi, Jakob Ibarra Garcia, Maddie Hernandez, Ryan Hill, Andrew Castillo, Jacob Weber, Emily Reyes, Chloe Cousineau,  Eddie Barajas, Aaron Roque, Peter Rodriguez, Steve Gutierrez Flores, Abby Gonzalez, Sierra Alexi, Luchiano Swidan, Emily Walos, Paige King, Miyah Lopez, Bella Moreno (BELLA ESPINOZA/Ethic News)

Wildcat Associated Student Body organizes demonstration to support advisor

By MAURICIO PLIEGO and SPENCER MOORE

On March 17, a protest was organized on Opal and Colton Avenue by #savefash, a movement created by the Redlands East Valley Associated Student Body junior class in hopes of reinstating their advisor, Matt Fashempour, of eight years.

Members of the ASB class felt that there was not an explanation given. 

Robert Clarey, the REV Principal, says, “ This is a personnel decision and, as such, it would be unprofessional of me to discuss openly.”

Shannon Cockerill, current senior and ASB Executive President at REV, says, “I realize protest and petitions don’t guarantee anything, so at the very least, I hope Fashempour gets an explanation and he see’s just how many people support him and appreciates everything he does.”

Clarey says, “I hear the rumors as well, it is unfortunate that a lack of information causes people to make up their own narrative. People feel the need to be in the know…or at least to appear that they are in the know.”

More students joined the crowd throughout the morning prior to the start of school. Participants received shirts printed by a parent of one of the students involved and held student-created posters.

Redlands East Valley High School junior Nathan Derry holds a “Save Fash” poster along the sideline of Colton Avenue before school on March 17. (AVA LARSON/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School sophomores Lily Shaw and Amanda Morrison carry posters for passing cars to “honk for Fash” along the sideline of Colton Avenue before school on March 17. (AVA LARSON/ Ethic News photo)

Lights, camera, action: what Wildcat & eAcademy performers have to say about Spring Showcase

By ISAAC MEJIA

The Redlands East Valley High School theater department presented its Spring Showcase on Friday, March 11. While the department traditionally performs a musical in the spring, this year they decided on a showcase in which students were allowed to perform and collaborate on acts of their choosing. 

The show consisted of many scenes from popular movies and tv shows including “Mean Girls” and “Victorious” as well as acts from acclaimed musicals such as “Hamilton” and “In the Heights.” 

“My favorite part has been working with my friends, and seeing how talented everyone is. Getting to act is amazing, but my favorite part [is] having fun with other actors,” said Connor Bromberger, a senior at REV. 

REV senior ​​Leilani Baldwin said, “The people are so supportive and loving. Needless to say, they are some of the most fun people I know.”

Many of these acts required students to work together creatively for weeks. 

Grace Castell, a senior at REV, said her favorite part about the showcase “has to be working with my friends. There’s never a dull moment with them.”

Bella Mia Fraley, a freshman at Redlands E-Academy said, “Being on stage, the lights, the sounds, it’s all so fun, and I hope I can do more productions with this school in the future.”

While preparing for the showcase was full of excitement, performers admit that the process was stressful at times. 

Nina Brown, a freshman at E-academy said, “The preparation process has been really stressful, but also really fun. It’s always fun to go to rehearsal and practice.”

Ella Fletcher, a senior at REV, said the showcase was “definitely a little stressful, but that is always a part of performing onstage because performers care so much that what you see onstage is as perfect as possible.”

(From left down to right down) Evie O’Brien, Lizeth Lopez, Rose Blatchley, Ella Fletcher, Dana Hatar and Megan Rimmer starred in Ex Wives from “Six” the musical. Their performance was the closing act of the night. (ALISSON BERMUDEZ/ Ethic News photo)

Junior Evie O’Brien (left) and senior Connor Bromberger (right) stand next to each other with weaponry during their portrayal of Henry vs his Demons. (ISAAC MEJIA/ Ethic News photo)

The actors and actresses of the showcase had their own unique individual experiences. Behind the scenes, the tech and stage crew had their own experiences as well.

eAcademy freshman Dakarai Marshall said “I have learned a lot more than I expected, such as using power tools. I have had fun learning these life lessons and skill sets that I will benefit from forever.”

Moments before the show, the cast sits around the set patiently waiting to be called by the tech crew for their last mic check. (ALISSON BERMUDEZ/ Ethic News photo)

Liliana Arroyo (left) and Lelanie Baldwin (right), two of the soloists of the night, pose for a picture outside of the theater room.  Arroyo performed “Hopelessly Devoted To You” from Grease while Baldwin performed “Breathe” from In the Heights. (ALISSON BERMUDEZ/ Ethic News photo)

(ISAAC MEJIA/ Ethic News video)

For some students, the Spring Showcase marked the beginning of their theatrical career at REV. However, for seniors, the showcase was the last time that they would set foot on the Blackstone Theater Stage and perform in front of a live audience.

Fletcher said, “I am happy to be a part of this production, but it is a little bittersweet. I do wish it was a full show though, but I’m happy to be involved!”

“It’s a surreal feeling to know this is the last time I will walk on and off of the Blackstone Theater stage as an attending REV student, ” said Baldwin. “I had grown so much in my craft in this very building.”

 “I do wish we could have done an actual play, but having the freedom to create a scene on our own is still just as great,” Catell said. “As long as I have fun and get to be with my friends, then I don’t mind! I will miss all the people I got to work with once I graduate though.”

Orangewood to implement new cell phone policy after Spring Break

By ANGELINE ASATOURIAN

At Orangewood High School, a new cell phone policy is starting on April 4. This policy was created due to cell phone abuse taking up class time. There will also be new consequences to go with it. 

The new policy states that starting on April 4, teachers may allow the use of cell phones or any electronic devices for a designated time “for a specific educational opportunity” or if there is an emergency, but there must be a verbal “explicit permission” before the electronic device is pulled out to be used. 

As with any rules, there are consequences for using these devices without the permission of school personnel. 

According to the policy, the first offense will result in the teacher issuing a verbal warning, with the parents or guardians being notified. 

The second offense will have the device confiscated for the rest of the school day, but will be “released to the student.” 

The third  offense will be having the device once again confiscated “for the remainder of the school day,” and parents or guardians will have to come to the Orangewood High School administration office and pick up the device. 

The policy states, “Orangewood High school is not responsible for stolen, lost, or damaged electronic devices.” 

Some students at Orangewood are not too pleased to be having this new policy and others say they understand the reason for it. 

Johnathan McGuire, a junior at Orangewood said, “I think they should change it, not like get rid of it, but revise it.” 

Monica Penunuri, a sophomore at Orangewood, states “I don’t like it, but I get it.” 

Students can attend School Site Council meetings and discuss their concerns with the staff. 

Teacher Feature Q&A: 18 Questions with Citrus Valley’s Katie Mackenzie

By DESTINY RAMOS

Katie Mackenzie, a tenth grade honors English teacher at Citrus Valley High School, who is in her 18th year of teaching, answers 18 questions about herself.

Mrs. Mackenzie has been teaching for 18 years. (DESTINY RAMOS/ Ethic News photo)

Teaching Reflections

Q: How long have you been teaching?

Mackenzie: I think this is my 18 year of teaching.

Q: What is the nicest thing a student has done for you?

Mackenzie: Students are just very lovely. They write nice letters and say hello. Recently, my daughter’s student teacher was a former student and that was really fun to reconnect with him and he wrote me this really lovely letter where, in the end, he was complimenting my daughter but also complimenting me and saying that I inspired him to teach and that was really special. Especially since it’s so many years later. 

Q: What’s the most frustrating thing about teaching?

Mackenzie: I think it’s just things that are out of my control. Like the pandemic, it was really hard.

Q: Which of your lessons is your favorite to teach?

Mackenzie: I like teaching writing. I like after you guys have finished an essay, even though it’s kind of boring. I like going over it because I think it’s helpful. I like when it feels useful, like ‘okay we’re going to get better at this’ so I do actually like going over writing.

Q: What is your favorite thing about your students?

Mackenzie: I like the energy and I feel like sophomores, in particular, get happier as the year goes on. I like sophomores because they are funny and play a little bit and they aren’t too bogged down by stress quite yet, so I love that about them. I also like that they are open to sharing their ideas and they always have good insights that I don’t always think of and I really like learning from them.

Q: What is your favorite story you tell your students?

Mackenzie: I don’t like to talk about my life very much to my students. Like little things, but they’re often interested in how I met my husband and how I studies abroad and I do like to talk about how I studied abroad because it’s fun and it can inspire other kids to do that and I think that it was a really awesome experience but I tend to not talk about my personal life very much. 

Q: What is your favorite thing about teaching?

Mackenzie: I think it really is the connection with kids and getting to meet new people every year. It is interesting how we meet now but then sometimes I meet up with them much later and I do think that sometimes people come into your life when they’re supposed to and I feel lucky to get to meet all these different people and learn from them every year.

Other Favorites and One Pet Peeve

Q: When you aren’t teaching, what is your favorite thing to do?

Mackenzie: I like to hang out with my friends, I like to travel a lot. That’s probably my favorite thing to do actually. I love to travel.

Q: What’s your favorite place that you have been?

Mackenzie: So I studied abroad in Oxford, that’s where I met my husband, and while I was there I got to travel a bunch, and so we went to Prague and Scotland and France and all those places because it’s easy. And my husband’s from South Africa so I’ve been there and I really like South Africa and New Zealand, we’d go because it’s where his brothers live so I don’t know. I feel like I could live in New Zealand but I really liked Prague as a city.

Q: Who is your favorite author?

Mackenzie: Honestly Shakespeare. I know it’s lame but he is my favorite author.

Q: What is your favorite holiday?

Mackenzie: Christmas 

Q: What is your biggest pet peeve?

Mackenzie: I don’t like bad attitudes, like when people are grumpy all the time.

Fun Facts

Q:  If you never became a teacher what do you think you would have become?

Mackenzie: : I used to think it would have been fun to be a lawyer because I like to argue and because I like to think about stuff like that and I like to debate and I love lawyer shows but I don’t think I would have liked the lifestyle. But, I think I would have liked to be a lawyer.

Q: Are you a tea or coffee person?

Mackenzie: Tea

Q: What movie can you constantly watch and never get sick of?

Mackenzie: I really like the A&E miniseries Pride and Prejudice with Colin Firth as Mr. Darcey.

Q: What brightens your mood when you are having a bad day?

Mackenzie: My family, being with my daughter and husband makes me really happy.

Q: If you could live anywhere, where would it be and why?

Mackenzie: I think I would move to New Zealand. Of all the places I’ve visited, I think it’s the place where I would be the most happy living. It’s a little bit like Southern California because it’s coastal and it’s kind of metropolitan but there is a lot more open space and it’s very beautiful. 

Q: What was the last book you read?

Mackenzie: It’s from my book club. It’s kind of dark but it’s called ‘Deep Water.’

Lea este artículo en español aquí: https://ethic-news.org/2022/05/21/preguntas-y-respuestas-sobre-la-caracteristica-del-maestro-18-preguntas-con-katie-mackenzie-de-citrus-valley/

Wildcats bring awareness with mental health fair

By ELLA FITZPATRICK, CYRUS ENGELSMAN, DANIELA MORA, MIA ARANDA, MIRIAM YORDANOS, AILEEN JANEE CORPUS and KENDRA BURDICK

To raise more awareness and combat the mental health stigma at Redlands East Valley High School, the Mental Health Awareness club hosted a mental health fair from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on March 8 in the main quad.

Wildcat students explore the Mental Health Fair during third period in the main quad on the East Valley campus to participate in the Mental Health Fair on Tuesday, March 8. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic News photo)

Julie Castillo, teacher of the Mental Health Career Pathway classes at REV who advises the Mental Health Awareness club at REV, says, “People know what they hear in the media. People know what they hear from friends. People know what they hear from family. But people don’t always know what people who work in the field of mental health want them to know.”

“Many people with serious mental illness are challenged doubly. On one hand, they struggle with the symptoms and disabilities that result from the disease,” according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine.  “On the other, they are challenged by the stereotypes and prejudice that result from misconceptions about mental illness.” 

Booths led by students from the mental health pathway classes, clubs on campus and organizations partnered with the Mental Health Awareness Club and offered a variety of different resources, education, and activities. 

 “The mental health fair is here to educate people who know nothing about mental health,” says Castillo.

 “We always need to bring this education and awareness to the public. And that has always been our main goal: to eradicate the stigma through the education of mental health, wellness, and illness,” says Castillo.

Mental health resource and education booths

Through Castillo’s efforts, the Mental Health Awareness club and the mental health career pathway classes were able to team up with multiple mental health organizations based outside of REV. 

These outside organizations that made an appearance, and also made up half of the 20 booths at the fair, included The Spring to Autumn Counseling Services, the Colton-Redlands-Yucaipa Regional Occupational Program, the San Bernardino County Department of Behavioral Health, the Behavioral Medical Center of Loma Linda Hospital, Redlands Unified School District employees, the University of Redlands Alliance for Community Transformation and Wellness members, the Inland Empire Therapy Dogs, the San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools and Generation Rise. 

Ranger, a dog who works with the Inland Empire Therapy Dogs, poses for a picture looking into the sun. He joined other dogs from the program at the Mental Health Fair at REV to receive pets and belly rubs from the students visiting the fair. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic News photo)

Wildcats students eagerly wait for their turn using the virtual reality headset offered by the Colton-Redlands-Yucaipa Regional Occupational Program on Tuesday, March 8. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic News photo)

The other ten booths were run by students from the Mental Health Awareness Club and the mental health career pathway classes. The students put together educational booths on various mental health topics and coping skills. 

Above: Joshua Zatarain, a junior at Redlands East Valley High School, plays a game at the Mental Health Awareness Club booth at the Mental Health Fair on March 8. Joshua Masangcay, a senior and the president of the Mental Health Awareness club, shows Zatarain how to play the game. The game involves throwing a ball towards a pyramid of collapsable cans; if the player successfully knocks down a can, they win the game. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School seniors Avery Zercher and Grace Mcastell, students in the mental health careers pathway classes, give a presentation on the realities of substance abuse at a booth for the Mental Health Fair on Tuesday, March 8. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School junior Breanna Routhieux and senior Alison Bradshaw provide information about different types of foods that improve brain health at their nutrition booth at the Mental Health Fair on Tuesday, March 8. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic News photo)

REV’s clubs, including Rock Painting Club, the Wildcat Pride Association and Art Club, were also encouraged to participate in the fair with their own educational booths about stigmas and how to practice healthy mental wellness.

Rock Painting Club

The Rock Painting Club’s booth provided students with supplies to paint their own rocks that they could keep. 

Redlands East Valley High School freshmen Vibha Athreya (left) and Eliana Campa (right) use the booth’s supplies to paint rocks on Tuesday, March 8 in the Wildcat quad. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

“Rock painting is a way to prevent stress and find a healthy coping mechanism,” said Rock Painting Club President and senior Tejazvi Gopalan. 

Rock Painting Club President and senior Tejazvi Gopalan helps oversee the booth where students had the opportunity to paint their own rocks on Tuesday, March 8 in the Wildcat quad. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic News photo)

Rock Painting Club welcomes any new members every Thursday at lunch in room K110 to paint rocks that can either be kept for personal use or be used to help decorate the campus. 

Art Club

Art Club’s booth allowed students to display their emotions on paper by scribbling on paper then using colors to express the emotions they feel daily.  

Art Club encourages different interpretations of art, therefore they reinforced the idea that not everyone’s color interpretations will not be the same. 

“Most of us, whether we know it or not, have a mental illness of some sort. Eliminating the stigma is really going to be beneficial for the future,” said Art Club Vice President junior Lana Nutter. 

Wildcat Pride Association 

The Wildcat Pride Association had a booth with a game of Myth or Fact where WPA Vice President Finn Stewart would make a statement and it would be up to the player to decide if the statement was a myth or a fact. If the participant got the statement correct, then they would be able to get a raffle ticket and a candy or prize. 

“Our station is about mental health in the LGBTQ+ community and how it’s stigmatized, and we have written down myths and facts about certain parts of it,” said junior and WPA Vice President Finn Stewart. 

Wildcat seniors Rishi Patel, Neo Morrison and Corey Ford talk to Finn Stewart, the vice president of The Wildcat Pride Association, as they fill out an interactive worksheet for their class. The worksheet was provided by Julia Castillo to encourage students to interact with the booths at the fair by answering the questions as they went around visiting booths. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic News photo)

The WPA had a poster presenting facts about LGBTQIA+ mental health.

Stewart said, “We have a lot of help lines. The fair will be more awareness for students to understand more about people with mental illness and understand that they shouldn’t be hidden away from society and they should be considered people too even though they are struggling with something.” 

Student table on schizophrenia 

The student-run schizophrenia booth offered educational information about what it’s like to have the mental illness. The booth also provided knowledge on the experiences people have when living with it. 

Alicia Gullon and Shannon Cockerill, Wildcat seniors and members of the Mental Health Awareness Club, educate students on the realities of schizophrenia on Tuesday, March 8. Seniors Shireen Takkouch, Luck Mathis and Gavin Oliver watch as senior Isabella-Martinez Spencer plays an interactive game of “this or that” on the computer. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic News photo)

REV junior Jaylene Lopez said that the booth not only had information to learn about schizophrenia but it also had an interactive game you can play. The game provided a little insight as to how it feels to have schizophrenia and if the player can handle living with it.

Lopez says, “if you really wanna learn, you’re gonna learn more about different types of mental illnesses and different ways to help cope with other mental illnesses.”

The San Bernardino County Department of Behavioral Health

At the San Bernardino County Department of Behavioral Health booth, they offered pamphlets and flyers  about urgent mental health care, teenage depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, adverse childhood experiences and more.

The pamphlets offered resources and included symptoms of mental health illness that are common within teens.

Volunteer Services Coordinator Susan Abito said, “This event is going to open up a dialogue between the students, where maybe they might not feel comfortable talking. But, now that everyone here and there is a lot of support, they will be more open to discuss mental health.”

Charlotte Baldes, a Wildcat senior, talks with Lana Frausto who works with the San Bernardino County Department of Behavioral Health. Baldes and Frausto discuss mental health resources and potential volunteer program information provided at their booth at the Mental Health Fair at in the Wildcat quad on Tuesday, March 8. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic News photo)

Opinion: Students need a weekly mental health break

By MEL MAGANA FRANCO

School is draining. Any student can agree, some more than others. 

“It’s draining because you wake up in the morning everyday and go to school for how many hours, six to seven,” says Niamonie Calloway, junior at Orangewood High School.

Students work, deal with family issues and some play sports. A break is well deserved. It would help students stay in a more calm state of mind. 

Students are the new generation coming up. It’s a lot of pressure on adults, of course, to make sure we are great individuals. But students, as kids and teens, we feel pressure. We feel like we have to meet everyone’s expectations and we become stressed. Everything is new to us.

We deserve at least one mental break weekly from all the thinking and the expectations and all of the worry.

Research shows that academic stress leads to less well-being and an increased likelihood of developing anxiety or depression. Students who have academic stress tend to do poorly in school. This mental health day will be a good thing for students’ future and mental health.

Having a mental health day off will encourage students to come to school when there is school. Students don’t come to school because they are drained or have higher priorities to deal with. With a mental break day, they will wait just for that day to come so they can get it out of the way. If you look at attendance around scheduled breaks, like Spring Break, the week before and after students are more likely to attend because they know they have that break. When there is school for days and weeks on end, students feel like there isn’t a break so they start to miss school. With scheduled mental break days, students will be more encouraged to show up to school.

It is true that some students may take advantage of this. Yes, some students may still not show up on scheduled school days. The school can make a rule that if they miss school without an actual good excuse, they can’t take the mental health day because it will be replaced with a make-up day. A few teachers on a rotating basis will be on campus on these mental health days for those students who need to make up missing work from an unexcused absence.  Those who showed up during scheduled school days should get the mental health break.

Students not only need a break, but would benefit from a mental health day off each week.

Opinion: Students should be able to excuse their own tardies

By ANDREW SIMMONS

There is an issue in high school attendance: tardiness.

There are many reasons students will not show up to school on time, as well as why students should be able to excuse their own tardies.

Mental health

Students may be dealing with mental health issues at home of which they don’t feel comfortable disclosing with school staff.

They could be living with depression and having trouble finding the motivation to get out of bed.

They could have obsessive-compulsive disorder or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or other disorder, any of which can affect what time a student wakes up and what time they are ready for school in the morning.

Transportation

There is an assumption that all students have a way to get to school on time, but many students have compromised means of transportation and or live a further distance from the school than most students

A majority of high school students do not have their learner’s permit/driver’s license and many students or their families also do not have cars. A few examples of why students may not have access to a license or car include not being able to afford it, not being permitted by their guardian to do so, or simply being too afraid and not wanting to drive.

Some students have to bike safely up and down hills and through car-busy highways and roads, take city busses or even use costly ride-share apps.

Family size

Schools tend to neglect the fact that many students have many siblings, all in different age ranges, attending schools with different starts times, as well as possibly living in a one guardian household.

It would not be unreasonable to accept the verity of limited time in the morning. With this in mind, there is the challenge of trying to get every child in that family admitted to school on time every single day. No matter how prepared and organized a large family may be, there can always be unexpected obstacles like a traffic jam, or a type of mechanical error with their vehicle. 

Are students responsible and trustworthy enough to excuse their own tardies?

While it is understandable for teachers and staff to be skeptical about the very real possibility of students abusing the ability to call in sick, it is also important to note that the trust between students and teachers is generally strained due to prejudice from teachers towards students that are late or miss school frequently.

More than often, instead of trying to figure out why their students are missing school hours, the teacher will give the student unneeded and discouraging discipline. Students that get punished for something they had no control over may be less inclined to take responsibility the next time they could have control over their situation.

Many students, contrary to many adult beliefs, have very real and very complicated issues. Some of these problems, students might not be willing to share with teachers, especially in front of their peers during class time, which is more than often the time and place teachers choose to confront late students. This is a very disconcerting and uncomfortable situation that is far too familiar to many young adults in highs school. One could argue that a more appropriate time and setting to address the tardines of a student would be after class when the student is no longer occupied or in the presence of an audience of their peers.

Teachers may find that in listening to their students, they will also find understanding. Sympathy for students can go a very long way, and they may be less inclined to lie about their whereabouts, or wander the school halls with meandering minds.

The denigration of students’ personal issues is a disease among schools. The allowance of young adults to be trusted and involved with the responsibility of attendance issues may lead to a more adamant will to attend school and attend on time, of course keeping the issue of transportation in mind.

Ultimately, trusting the judgment of high school students for calling in to excuse missing class time in advance could gradually diminish tardiness. Allowing students the responsibility to excuse their own tardies may motivate an initiative in students to protect that responsibility by not abusing it.

California lifts indoor school mask mandate

By CITRUS VALLEY ETHIC STAFF

After two years of the pandemic, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced the removal of the indoor school mask mandate to be effective on March 12. This shift in mask policy corresponds with Newsom’s Feb. 18 announcement that California had shifted into the phase of treating coronavirus as an endemic. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “We’re moving toward a time when COVID isn’t a crisis, but it’s something we can protect against and treat.”

Armani Silberzahn a sophomore states “I’m honestly really happy about it, masks were never really an issue for me to wear but if I had a choice I wouldn’t wear them. I literally just wore them for whatever safety they provided and others comfortability.”

“Several states are moving to eliminate mask mandates as the number of reported coronavirus cases dips to its lowest level since December, when the highly contagious Omicron variant touched off a wave of cases,” according to the New York Times. 

Sophia Piper, a junior at Citrus Valley said, “I think it will make a divide between people with a mask and people without one. Some people won’t care. But it will definitely make a divide in the classroom.”

Posted signs around Citrus Valley High School remind staff and students to wear a mask. The school indoor mask mandate ends in California, effective after March 11. (BELLA ESPINOZA/ Ethic News photo)

A study researching COVID’s secondary attack rates focused on eight public school districts in Massachusetts, with around 70 schools and a little over 33,000 enrolled students, during the 2020–21 school year. The study found a secondary attack rate of 11.7% for the unmasked students versus the 1.7% for masked students.

Rebecca Garcia, Citrus Valley freshman, said, ”I believe the mask mandate should still be in effect. We can’t always rely on what the government says because sometimes we know our own communities better.”

With the mask mandate now taking its leave, many Americans have been urged to receive the COVID vaccine. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccine received full FDA approval after tens of thousands of clinical trials spanning up to twelve months, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine.

“I believe the mandate was good the way it was already,” said Christopher Kuzdal, a senior at Citrus Valley.  “Since the mandate was organized so that masks were only required indoors, I think that created a good combination of masks on and off. I think at the very least, masks should be required indoors to help stop the spread.”

Up to 70% of Californians have taken the vaccine with 72M doses administered as of Mar. 9, according to Our World in Data.

In regards to mask-wearing once the mandate is lifted, Citrus Valley English teacher Stephen Howard said, “I will probably keep it on for a while depending on how the kids are doing with it. If kids are still wearing the mask I want to do what they are doing. Supporting them and what and what their choices are.”

According to the CDC, “A study of an outbreak aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt, an environment notable for congregate living quarters and close working environments, found that use of face coverings on-board was associated with a 70% reduced risk of infection.”

Fernando Ramirez, Citrus Valley physical education teacher, said that he respects “people that might have compromised immune system or family members or close friends that have those issues so if they prefer me to have a mask on, I will put it on in respect to them, but if it is okay not to have it, I’ll have it off.”

A re-enactment of a student tossing a face mask into the trash can near the Citrus Valley High School outdoor quad area. California Governor Gavin Newsom announced that the school mask mandate will be effective after March 11. (BELLA ESPINOZA/ Ethic News photo)

K-12 schools in California will mandate the vaccine starting Jan. 1 2023 as announced by Governor Gavin Newsom.

Ramirez’s said that people “should be able to make their own choice for their own health while also exhibiting a consensus for their community. So as long as they are considerate of other people they can make good decisions.”

“I would love it if we would be more responsible when we don’t feel well and wear a mask. Hopefully we will be moving out of this,” said Howard.

Wildcats visit elementary schools for National Read Across America Day

By ELLA FITZPATRCK and CYRUS ENGELSMAN 

National Read Across America was established in 1998 to encourage children and adults to find enjoyment in reading. March 2 has continued to be National Read Across America day, where groups such as local police, city council officials and high school students go to elementary schools to read to children.

Celebrated on the birthday of Theodore Seuss Geisel, American author of children’s books under the pen name Dr. Seuss, National Read Across America day is distinguished by the tradition of reading his stories such as “Green Eggs and Ham,” “Horton Hears a Who,” and “The Lorax.” 

This year, Redlands East Valley High School students went to Crafton Elementary, Judson and Brown Elementary, Mariposa Elementary and Mentone Elementary.  Each school gave the high school students two hours to read to as many classes as possible.  

Shannon Cockerill, Alicia Gullon, Ella Fitzpatrick and Katelyn Kennedy read the children’s book “The Day the Crayons Quit” by Drew Daywalt to a group of second-grade students on Wednesday, March 2 at Mariposa Elementary School in Redlands, CA for Read Across America. (Credit to Anthony Gomez)

“Interacting with kids brings a whole new wonder of joy,” says Shannon Cockerill, a senior at REV. “When working with them, they have so much energy and joy.”

At Mariposa Elementary School, the 22 participants from REV were given booths–which were set up on the field–to coordinate. At the five booths, classes of about 20 elementary school students would rotate to as many booths as they wanted and each booth offered a different reading and activity. 

Gavin Oliver, Shireen Takkouch, Carston Marich, Isabella Martinez-Spencer and Soraya Gisele Sefiane Coady read a book by Dr. Seuss to a class of elementary school students at Mariposa Elementary School on Wednesday, March 2 in Redlands, CA for Read Across America. (ELLA FITZPATRICK / Ethic News photo)

“It was a lot of fun! I helped read ‘The Day The Crayons Quit’ and helped set up relay activities for the kids,” said Alicia Gullon, a senior at REV.

Seniors Piper Hanson, Ella Fitzpatrick, Lily Cooper, Alicia Gullon, Shannon Cockerill, Emiline Morrison, Tejazvi Gopalan, Katelyn Kennedy, Denver Neff, Isha Saife, Shireen Takkouch, Riley Bouer, Nicholas Sadowski, Gavin Oliver, Carston Marich, Isabella Martinez-Spencer, Soraya Gisele Sefiane Coady, Rishi Patel, Nicholas Perna, Corey Ford, Patrick McIntyre and Sammy Zackowski pose for a photo in front of a mural on Wednesday, March 2 at Mariposa Elementary School located in Redlands, CA. They participate in Read Across America which involves reading books and playing games with the elementary students. (Courtesy of Juliann Ford)

At Judson and Brown Elementary, 13 students were given books to read to children, and hats to wear. Students were told to read their books from one class to another, rotating between classrooms and reading to all grade levels.  

Similar to the group who visited Judson and Brown Elementary, the group of REV students who went to Mentone Elementary school were also instructed to go to every classroom and read a book or two to the students. 

“It was really cool,” says Arnie James Corpus, a senior at REV who visited Mentone Elementary School. “All of the kids wanted to hear the stories and were full of questions. It was very heartwarming to have been able to read to them.”

Editor’s note: The Mariposa Elementary School group photo credit was mistakenly given to Ella Fitzpatrick in the original post. It has since been corrected to Juliann Ford on March 8 at 2:57 p.m.

East Valley students shocked cold by snowfall

By ELLA FITZPATRICK and SPENCER MOORE

Redlands and other cities were greeted with unexpected snowfall across the Inland Empire on Feb. 23, 2022.

According to the Washington Post, a severe drop in temperature was reported to be expected in the Central United States starting the week of Feb. 21, 2022. Cold winds of 20 to 40 degrees were set to blow into the Northern and Midwest areas of the country.

Picture taken at the end of third period at 10:36 a.m. on the top of the stairs connected to the K-wing (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic News Photo)

The sudden blast of cold weather was initially thought to only make an appearance in the early hours of the morning, being a time of colder temperature. However, near the end of third period at 10:20 a.m., students and staff at Redlands East Valley High School were surprised by a light snowfall. 

During fourth period, snow began to fall in the quad area of Redlands East Valley High School (SPENCER MOORE/ Ethic News photo)

The dramatic change of weather from cloudy and partly sunny to snowing roused excitement among students and staff at REV. Some students were even let out of their classrooms to enjoy the snow, which is a rare occurrence in Redlands.

“It was super unexpected, and I like that my teacher let us all out of class to go look at it,” says Rose Blatchley, a sophomore at REV. 

The snowfall lasted for almost an hour, continuing until the middle of REV’s lunchtime which starts at 12:39 p.m. and ends at 1:09 p.m..

Sophomore Jolene Kilday explains her joy in seeing the snow this time of year. (SPENCER MOORE/ Ethic News photo)

Photos: Wildcat varsity girls’ basketball loses in second round of CIF playoffs

By MIA ARANDA

Redlands East Valley High School’s varsity girls’ basketball team lost to Louisville High School 43-56 in the second round of CIF Southern Section Division 3A playoffs in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16.

By halftime, REV was losing 18-26 and was able to narrow the gap further by the end of the third quarter with a score of 32-38.

However, Wildcat junior and starter Shaelyn McClain was substituted by senior Carly Copeland following an injury in the fourth quarter. McClain had a total of 13 points for the Wildcats during the game.

Louisville High School, a private, Catholic school in Woodland Hills, has an overall basketball record of 16-5 now. They advanced to the quarterfinals against San Marcos High School at LHS on Feb. 19 and lost 50-49.

This was the first time REV’s girls’ basketball team had qualified for playoffs since 2017. They qualified for Division 1A playoffs, but the team lost to La Cañada High School in the first round.

This year, the Wildcats had a league record of 5-5.

“The team showed huge improvements starting our league season and had to beat a very competitive Cajon squad to qualify this year,” said REV varsity girls’ basketball head coach Robert Tompkins. “That was a big win for us.”

REV senior Ebonny Staten, who had been on the varsity team since her freshman year, and freshman Ci’ella Pickett were attributed by Tompkins as being some of the team’s greatest strengths for having advanced to the second round. In addition, junior Myla Gibson’s improvement at the post also helped the team considerably.

“I am very proud of this team and what they achieved this season. They were able to turn a ‘rebuilding’ year into a successful CIF qualifying run,” said Tompkins.

Tompkins continues, “We set our goals preseason as making the playoffs, we exceed that goal by not only qualifying, but also reaching the second round.”

Louisville High School sophomore Taylor Westbrook makes a 2-pointer while being guarded by Redlands East Valley High School junior Shaelyn McClain during the first quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School sophomore Leah Kibrom attempts a 3-pointer during the second quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School senior Ebonny Staten drives to the basket and makes a 2-pointer during the second quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Louisville High School freshman Eva Van Lokeren guards Redlands East Valley High School junior Shaelyn McClain during the second quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School sophomore Leah Kibrom attempts a layup while being guarded by Louisville High School sophomore Taylor Westbrook during the second quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School senior Ebonny Staten looks for a teammate to pass to while being guarded by Louisville High School freshman Talya Sepand  during the second quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School junior Alyssa Lopez and other players watch Lopez’s 2-point shot go in during the second quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16.  (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School sophomore Leah Kibrom looks to pass to teammate Ebonny Staten while being double-teamed by Louisville High School sophomore Taylor Westbrook and junior Stevie Carmona during the second quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School senior Ebonny Staten looks to pass to a teammate while being guarded by Louisville High School sophomore Miye Kodama during the third quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School junior Alyssa Lopez is eventually blocked by Louisville High School freshman Ava Van Lokeren when she attempts to go up for a 2-pointer during the third quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School senior Ebonny Staten is fouled by Louisville High School sophomore Taylor Westbrook with six seconds left in the third quarter on Feb. 16 in the Wildcat gym. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Redlands East Valley High School junior Alyssa Lopez is double teamed by Louisville High School senior Katherine Csiszar and sophomore Taylor Westbrook during the third quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Following a shot attempt from Louisville High School, LHS freshman Ava Van Lokeren catches the rebound amid pressure from Redlands East Valley High School during the fourth quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

Louisville High School sophomore Miye Kodoma attempts a layup during the fourth quarter in the Wildcat gym on Feb. 16. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News photo)

East Valley’s new Maker Lab encourages creative skills

By CYRUS ENGELSMAN

Sophomore Deacon Carreon stares at a sign made by the librarians that says, “THE LAB”.  Each letter of the sign is meant to represent a different piece of technology available for students to use in the Maker Lab at Redlands East Valley High School. (CYRUS ENGELSMAN/ Ethic News photo)  

The Redlands East Valley High School has had a few recent additions on campus, renovating and updating the library, including a new Maker Lab.  

The Maker Lab is a new area filled with technology to help benefit and to inspire creative passion for students.  The Lab is managed by head librarian Korrie Krohne, who was excited to finally be able to show off the Maker Lab.

The Lab is equipped with sewing machines, cricket machines, arts and crafts supplies, fifteen cameras, and 3D printers and scanners.  

The new Maker Lab had been in preparation and construction stages since 2019 and had it soft opening in the Fall of 2021 with a few events.

Krohne said, “I am so thrilled to have the space available to students. When we came back from Winter Break this year, all the scaffolding and other parts of the renovation were out of the way, and we can now use the lab the way it was meant to be used.”

Junior Josh Buridck adds strings to a face mask he recently created in the new Maker Lab at Redlands East Valley High School.  This is one of the final steps of the face mask making process.   (CYRUS ENGELSMAN/ Ethic News photo)

To counteract large amounts of students from overcrowding the area, students have to sign up in advance to use the lab.  There are a variety of ways to sign up for the maker lab: the library tab on the schools webpage can bring up a form for personal projects, teachers can sign up the entire class to do a lab, and the librarian-led labs that students can sign up for.  

Librarian-led labs can be a variety of activities. The first of which was face mask making, students from all grades came together to create their own masks to make and keep.  When the second librarian-led lab was announced in December of 2021, students created their own Christmas ornaments.

Senior Amira Carthell sews her face mask together with the help of librarians at Redlands East Valley High School. This is the first step to the face mask making process.   (CYRUS ENGELSMAN/ Ethic News photo)

Krohne plans to have many more maker lab events in the future.

“I intend to run labs using the different lab equipment both after school and during lunch,” said Krohne. “Additionally, starting in the month of March, I plan on opening the lab one day a week during lunch time to support what people need–if they are working on a project they can come up on that day and use supplies available to them in the lab.”

Korrie Krohne, head librarian at Redlands East Valley High School, demonstrates how to use a sewing machine to the participating students.  The machines were used for students to sew face masks together and take home.  (CYRUS ENGELSMAN/ Ethic News photo)